ASB MAGAZINE: Byron Bay (NSW, Aust.) based Epokhe eyewear has announced the formation of a new entity, invigorated investment and boost to the brands board of management team. The newly inked Epokhe Eyewear Pty Ltd sees former Oakley South Pacific and Luxottica VP Paul Higgins and former sales representative and Caprice (Mambo) Brand Manager, Campbell North join Epokhe Founders, Dion Agius and Kai Neville along with Nathan McGregor CFO of Aizer Group, to form a formidable brand management team.
Epokhe is an Australian eyewear brand that was founded in 2012 by filmmaker Kai Neville and professional surfers Dion Agius and Mitch Coleborn. Since Epokhe’s inception, the brand has attracted an all-star team of ambassadors including Jack Freestone, Mitch Coleborn, Taj Burrow, Chippa Wilson and Creed McTaggart.
The change in the ownership comes with significant investment and boost in eyewear industry experience. Prior to joining Epokhe, Synapse Capital Executive Chairman Paul Higgins was Global Chief Executive Officer of 2XU from 2016 – 2019, and VP of Oakley Asia Pacific and Luxottica Group from 2009 – 2015. Higgins has worked with some incredible eyewear brands across globe, growing the Oakley brand sales from USD$110m to USD$300m in his six years running their Asia Pacific division.
Commenting on the newly formed partnership Higgins said, “We are excited to be joining forces with such a creative powerhouse. Epokhe’s design language fuses classic eyewear styling with a truly unique and pointy-edged inspiration from the heart of the surf industry. We are excited to be investing in a team that has established such beautiful product and such incredible levels of authenticity and consumer passion.”
Epokhe amicably parted ways with previous partners Declan Wise and Jono Salfield of Byron Bay based surf wear brand, Afends.
“We would like to acknowledge (Declan and Jono’s) contribution to Epokhe and their commitment to the brand,” said Campbell North. “The move allows the pair to focus entirely on their Afends business and allows Dion and Kai to partner with eyewear and surf industry veterans in Paul and myself,” Campbell North told ASB.
Epokhe Founder and Design Director, Dion Agius, observed; “We are all so happy to have found partners with such extensive commercial wisdom and eyewear industry experience. The excitement that they have for the brand is contagious and it feels like a whole new chapter for us. With this comes the back-end support for Kai and myself to continue to explore the never-ending creative possibilities with the brand, our surf team and our eyewear designs.”
“Afends has been an integral part of Epokhe’s growth since it’s conception eight years ago. The knowledge and experience they have brought to the brand over the years has been invaluable for Epokhe and it’s such an exciting time to see both brands grow at such an exponential rate and go on their own new journeys,” observed Dion Agius.
Epokhe Managing Director Campbell North said, “We are thrilled to partner with such an authentic brand. The future of Epokhe is extremely bright, the size and potential of our business and new projects reflects that strong confidence. The result will be an increased level of service and value provided to Epokhe customers.”
The management team is bolstered by Nathan McGregor, CFO Aizer Group Pty Ltd. McGregor is a close friend of Dion and Kai, a chartered accountant and is currently CFO of the Aizer Group of companies, a high-volume construction services business. Epokhe has previously had distribution agreements with partners in Europe and the US however the brand is currently servicing all regions, direct from its Byron Bay headquarters. North said the company is looking to appoint international distribution partners in 2021.
“New market expansion is definitely on the radar but is not our number one priority. There is so much potential for Epokhe in the Australian and New Zealand surf market and that’s our priority right now,” said Campbell North.
“For Epokhe to be successful, our retail partners need to have optimal assortments and have best sellers in stock at all times. This may sound straight forward, but to achieve it requires so much discipline and process. This is what we are bringing to Epokhe and this is our sole focus,”
“We’ve told Dion and Kai to just keep designing beautiful product and doing the incredibly creative stuff that Epokhe customers love and we’ll take care of the rest.” concluded Campbell North.
Epokhe is an Australian eyewear brand that was founded in 2012 by filmmaker Kai Neville and professional surfers Dion Agius and Mitch Coleborn. Good friends since their late teens the trio have been travelling the world and creating together for over a decade. The shooting of Kai’s 2010 film ‘Modern Collective’ spawned talks of creating a brand together, something of their own, something new and under their creative control. Spending so much time out under the sun and simply not being able to find eyewear that they and likeminded friends wanted to wear, the trio discovered a substantial hole in the eyewear industry and set out to fill it with a premium, youthful eyewear brand. The team’s relentless creativity keeps the Epokhe world spinning drawing inspiration from their surfing, design, art and film. Epokhe also takes its aesthetic cues from the timeless, optical frames of the past. Styles that have stood the test of time. A brand offering unparalleled style with handcrafted frames made from the finest sustainable materials. A focus on quality, design and ethical production methods have set a solid foundation for the brand.
Take a look. https://www.epokhe.co