Company founder Erik Olson.
(Photos © J. Maus/BikePortland,
unless noted otherwise)
After just four years in business, Portland Design Works has made a solid name for itself in the bike industry. It was September 2008 when we first shared that a young, former general manager at Planet Bike, Erik Olson, was leaving Wisconsin to start up a new company here in Portland. Olson came here specifically to allow his endeavor to feed off our rich and vibrant bike culture. A few months later he joined forces with fellow Planet Bike co-worker Dan Powell. And the rest, as they say, is history.
From their headquarters just off the busy bikeway of N. Williams Ave, Portland Design Works has built a distinctive brand on a shoestring marketing budget. They’ve done it by doing creative projects (Circulus anyone?), by becoming part of the community, and of course by designing some very cool, distinctive and functional products.
Earlier this month I spent some time with Powell, Olson, and Sales Manager Kevin Murphy to chat about how business is going and to get a peek at their latest offerings. (more…)