Industry News 3/14/2006

KUSTOM Announces the Apppointment of Pat Fraley as Brand Director

KUSTOM Announces the Apppointment of Pat Fraley as Brand Director

Irvine, Calif., – Paul Naude, CEO of Billabong USA, Announced today the appointment of Pat Fraley as Brand Director of KUSTOM footwear.  Pat will work from the KUSTOM headquarters in Irvine, California.

“Pat has the ability to multitask across brand sectors and job functions, which is a rare talent,” says Billabong USA President Paul Naude. “He’s a seasoned vet in the industry, and perfectly positioned to maximize the potential of the brand going forward.”

KUSTOM only recently entered the American marketplace where footwear has been one of the board sports industry’s largest areas of growth. “We see a great opportunity in both open toe and closed toe footwear specifically targeting surf rather than skate” says Naude.

“The response at both wholesale and retail levels has far exceeded expectations. The product is on a roll. Bringing new energy and talent to the company in the U.S. provides a great platform to build momentum,” adds Naude.

While skate shoes have been the emphasis at most labels and surf has been somewhat overlooked, Kustom plans to focus on the beach side of the shoe and sandal sector.

“The goal is to build brand and product excitement in the youth segment of the market,” notes Fraley.

Prior to joining KUSTOM, Pat was one of the original founders of Counter Culture and was instrumental in building the brand.  He is currently Brand Director of Honolua Surf Company, a waterman lifestyle brand focusing on an ocean- centered lifestyle.

“KUSTOM has support from a strong team of athletes,” Fraley adds, “There is a great opportunity in the marketplace for a new footwear brand and KUSTOM can take advantage of that.  I’m looking forward to the challenge.”