[ Q ] When was your company started?
March 1st, 1991.
[ Q ] Who was your company started by, and what sort of background do they have?
Jim Schiek, Dan Wissink & John Schiek. Dan bought out Jim in 1993 and John bought out Dan in 2000. Jim was the original inventor of the belt and a national waterski competitor. Dan was VP of sales for 7-Up and a master on the subject of high volume and low margins.
John Schiek is the only one left of the three who started Schiek Sports Inc. John has always had a passion for bodybuilding & business. He has a business degree from Marquette University. He won his weight class in his first bodybuilding competition in 1985, "Mr. Junior Milwaukee."
His cousin, Jim Schiek, gave him a belt which was designed by him and was in the process of being patented. Jim Schiek's father is an engineer at Mercury Marine Inc. and holds numerous patents and connected Jim with a good patent attorney. Thus the Triple patented Schiek Belt was born.
With John's background of sales and marketing, John took his knowledge of the Jack Daniels brand of marketing and applied it to Schiek Sports Inc. Years of hard work, determination, and the Grace of God, and as they say, the rest is history.
[ Q ] Tell us about your key employees. Who is who and what do they do?
- John Schiek - Owner and CEO. John is involved in all aspects of the company.
- Mark Troudt - President & CFO and John's partner.
Mark's background is that he was in the banking industry for 14 years and was a banker.
His major areas of responsibility are finance and day to day operations of the company.
- Chris Koth - A manufacturing sales rep with Schiek for 11 years. He came to Schiek Sports with a firefighter background and worked for a major health care provider for several years.
- Morey Benson - Graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison and has a degree in Exercise Science. Morey has been a manufacturing sales representative at Schiek Sports for 5 years.
- Administrative & Production Staff - We have a highly trained administrative & production team. Our average production employee has over 20 years of industrial sewing and production operations experience.
90% of them are former Oshkosh B'Gosh employees. This has enabled us to compete against Low Cost Foreign imports with higher quality, more flexibility, and shorter production lead times.
[ Q ] What separates your company from the rest of the industry?
We simply want to be the best belt, glove and strap company on the planet.
We did not say biggest, just the best! Also, having many of our lines "MADE IN THE USA!"
[ Q ] Are there any new and exciting products that you are coming out with soon?
Yes, we have doubled our product line since January of 2000. We are introducing several new product lines backed by dealer requests. They are two USA made lines of wrist wraps, a USA made line of elbow sleeves and a cycling glove that incorporates the Schiek "Patented Easy Off Fin" feature. These products will all be available in 2006!
[ Q ] What other plans do you have to help your company grow?
Continue to better educate the market on why your should wear a belt? Why you should use straps? Why you should wear gloves? Education is key.
[ Q ] Have you sponsored any athletes and if so, who have you sponsored? If so, who?
Jay Cutler &
Chris Cormier. Jay Cutler was our first bodybuilder we sponsored because he wore our lifting straps (
Model 1000PLS) before he was even a pro.
We always have been about integrity & credibility and think of our products as being the best.
We used to operate under the pretence: to be the best, you will use the best. So why wouldn't a person spend more money to buy a Schiek Product.
So, Jay was the best fit for our company! He also has a lot of credibility and integrity. Chris Cormier also has been a great person to represent the line. Jay introduced him to our line.
Jay Cutler @ The 2004 Olympia Posing During The Challenge Round.
[ Q ] What supplement combination would you recommend for someone just getting started?
[ Q ] What do you believe is the best thing about the supplement industry?
It is a fun and exciting industry.
[ Q ] The worst?
There are too many small internet companies out there that try and sell strictly on price, thus giving the supplement market, even more obstacles to overcome! We have strictly limited the amount of online companies for this reason. We prefer to work with the Bodybuilding.com's of the world!
[ Q ] Is there anything else you would like to say?
Thanks to all the consumers that use the
Schiek gear. A lot of passion, dedication and hard work has gone into our product lines. We appreciate them knowing the difference.