On December 14th the Oberalp Group and Pongs Velours GmbH & Co. KG (Wermelskirchen, Germany), leading manufacturer in high-end mohair velvet, signed an agreement where Pongs sold their skins-velvet division Velotex GmbH to the Italian group.
The main raw material of a skin is a specific technical textile called velours. This velvet is done with a highend yarn of wool, the mohair wool, and is woven with a precise face to face woven to make the skins glide in one sense and grip in the other. The market of ski mountaineering is growing very fast and the shortage of mohair yarn is becoming more and more critical. The fact of joining forced will allow for Oberalp to strength the supply chain and better source together this valuable raw material.
For many years Velotex has been the main supplier of velvet for the ski mountaineering climbing skins industry and was supplying almost 100% of the velvet for the Oberalp Group brand POMOCA. This long-lasting cooperation of POMOCA and Velotex convinced the Executive Board of the Oberalp Group to merge and join forces, generating with POMOCA the first ski mountaineering climbing skins manufacturer to verticalize from the yarn until the final consumer.
“Velotex was for us already a strategic partner, since we had an excellent relation and did several developments together. Merging is for me the wished natural step to be able to work even more together, plan common investment and think wildly into the future” said POMOCA’s general manager Josep Castellet. POMOCA employs 50 people in Denges, Switzerland, and is today market leader and supplies to several ski brands, as Dynafit, K2, Blizzard or Black Crows.
Gunnar Pongs, the CEO of Pongs and Velotex is very satisfied with the deal: “For us this merge for us is a consolidation of work done together and gives us the financial and commercial serenity we need to grow further together. The growth is pressive and the pressure on the mohair market remains very high. But together we are a lot stronger!”. Velotex employs 12 people in a 3700m2 factory in Wermelskirchen, Germany.
For any decision in Oberalp, there is a strategy behind. “In a world where supply chain and production gains importance, as we have seen with the covid pandemic, verticalization is a pilar for Oberalp to ensure good quality products, competitive advantage and reliable deliveries. Oberalp will continue verticalizing for the next years as we believe that this will give us the strength we need for the next years” declared Christoph Engl, the CEO of Oberalp Group.