Ogden, UT – Hart Ski Corp.’s CEO announced Tuesday that the company is relocating from Wayzata, Minn., near Minneapolis, to join other ski, snowboard and outdoor companies in the northern Utah city of Ogden.nThe 55-year-old company that made the first metal-edged skis will occupy a new headquarters and distribution warehouse on 23rd St. in Ogden, thanks to the city’s business development efforts that impressed Hart CEO Chris Farni and provided a $25,000 small-business loan to assist with the relocation.
“In deciding to move to Ogden, our management team was very favorably impressed with the city’s proactive business development environment and the city’s commitment to helping our company grow,” Farni said in a prepared statement. “Having other recognizable ski industry companies located here also helps us attract ski industry business to the area. And Ogden is a great center for logistical distribution and support.”
Hart currently manufactures some skis in Colorado and Washington, but most are made in Italy. Farni hopes to one day have all manufacturing done in-house in Ogden. For the moment, however, Hart officials expect to have five to 10 employees based in Ogden by the end of the year.
Hart is the 13th snowsports company to move to the Ogden area since Mayor Matthew Godfrey’s business development initiative begin in 2004. Others with a presence in Ogden include Amer Sports (Salomon, Atomic and Suunto), Smith Optics, Nidecker Snowboards, Scott USA and Goode. Rossignol North America’s distribution center is in the city, although the headquarters are in Kimball Junction near Park City. Godfrey actively courted Hart since meeting Farni at the SnowSports Industries America (SIA) trade show in Las Vegas in 2007.
In conjunction with the move, Hart officials on Tuesday announced a new initiative to get kids on the slopes. According to Farni, the company’s “Let’s Go Ski” program will involve other snowsports-related companies to outfit between 50 and 100 Ogden-area kids ages 6 to 12 and shuttle them to the nearby Snowbasin, Powder Mountain and Wolf Creek ski resorts for lessons and free ski time.