It is no secret that we like the Dutch trading company, but it is starting to become apparent the guys have strong feelings towards Paris. the city of light and the home of fashion in and outside of skating was honored with a second visit.
Alex Raeymaekers, Jeff van der Veken, Billy Hoogendijk, Hugo Snelooper, Bastiaan van Zadelhoff, Mats Edel, Othmar van Rijswijk, Willem van Dijk, Ali Belhadj and guest skater Tolia Titaev
Another one from our Dutch friends. This time you will get Amsterdam, Rotterdam & The Hague footage from Alex Raeymaekers, Billy Hoogendijk, Jair Gravenberch, Bastiaan van Zadelhoff, Othmar van Rijswijk, Willem van Dijk, Hugo Snelooper, Mats Edel, Ali Belhadj, Joffrey Morell and the fastest feet in the game, Mister Glen Fox.
A few weeks ago I was asked to come join a trip to Amsterdam. We met up with the guys from Pop Trading Co. to work on the article featured in the latest issue of Place. Whilst the weather was great, we went out skating with these guys every day. I took my camera with me and captured everything that went down in the interesting scenery of the Dutch capital.
My colleagues like to joke about me always claiming my Dutch identity. Just to give you an example: People often introduce us and say “These are the German guys from PLACE.” And I get an itchy feeling in my brain and say, “No man, I’m not German. I’m Dutch!” It goes both ways, though, as I learned when I went out to Amsterdam last January to do a web interview about Pop Trading Company. After the interview, I went out to kick it with Hugo Snelooper and Bastiaan a.k.a. “Bats” van Zadelhoff. It was one of those cold winter evenings, but we chose to buy some beers and walk the streets of the Dutch capital. Almost immediately both Hugo and Bats told me that they felt I had developed a little German accent! Of course, I felt some type of way about that, so I defended myself by saying that it was a northern accent. But that only made them laugh harder! As in many groups, it’s a sign of acceptance when you get dissed a little bit. Just a little poke in the ribs. Everybody gets it, or at least I hope so…
In the end, I never typed out that web interview and I like to think it wasn’t laziness but foresight that led me to make that Sartrean decision. Because if we had already ran it, this article would feel like a sequel – and the sequel is only very rarely better than its predecessor. So when we flew back from Amsterdam this second time, it felt like not doing something turned out to be the right decision. With that said, here’s a fresh look inside the Pop Trading Company.
Mats Edel – Ride on 50-50
The first time I met Mats he was sporting a MoMa PS1 Shirt, I figured he was wearing it as a fashion statement but he wasn’t. For most young people finding a form of self-expression is key and to see somebody take a serious interest in art at 18 years of age made me kind of jealous.
Alex Raeymakers – Fakie Varial Flip
Alex Raeymakers – Pole Bonk
The whole crew was fascinated with danny Sommerfeld’s climbing skills. We would all be skating a spot and somebody would say “Where is Danny?” and the next person would yell out “What the fuck is he doing up there on that balcony?”.
Hugo Snelooper – BS Heelflip
Hugo is one of the best but weirdest people to have a phone conversation with. Why? because he won’t stop making weird sounds when you are trying to hang up the phone “Killerrrr, instinct, G prrrrtpowpowpow.”
Joining the B(r)and
Everybody always says that working with friends can be a double-edged sword. You have to be prepared to both carry the weight in good and in bad times. Ask any Beatles fan and they will tell you that if John Lennon and Paul McCarthy never had that tension, the music would probably not have been all that great. In a way, the Pop guys are like a great band to me, from Peter Kolks and Ric van Rest, who started Pop and put on Willem and Bats – who in turn helped with scouting some new talent that in the end built the b(r)and, and made it into what it is now. Hanging out with the entire group, it felt like we were the opening act, traveling in the same tour bus, hanging out at the same bars, basically going with the flow whilst getting to know each other.
Now, if you hang out with this crew you might start believing that Pop is an acronym for People Owning Personality. Why?
Because everybody has a strong personality and when they get together, everything gets amplified. It brought out the best in all of us and every day was full of laughter mixed in with “real talk” type of conversations. Pop seems to be right on the money not only when in comes to the image of the b(r)and, but also when it comes to the product they put out. As Peter Kolks told us: “We would rather do it the way we want to and die gracefully, than to make something we are not proud of.” And they can indeed be proud. Not only did they get noticed outside of the Benelux borders – which can be a hard thing to do – but they have kept true to their roots by maintaining and pushing their Low Countries aesthetics, only periodically changing up when on tour. Always switching between treading carefully and making a new step, you can tell that a lot of skate nerd knowledge, street smarts, planning, and spontaneity are at work at Pop – together with the occasional beer that will be stretched out like a towel until the last drop has left the can.
A man with experience once told me, “Work together, don’t be afraid to fight each other but never forget to go to the bar together. Because if you don’t, you forget to forget and that will fuck things up in the end.” Luckily, that’s some advice that nobody at Pop seems to need right now because they do all of that organically. Maybe I’m making it sound too utopian. I mean, during our time with them they did make a lot of jokes about each other, tried to hit each other by shooting a football as hard as they could and they might even have posted some unflattering images of each other on the ‘gram. But that’s all just part of the vibe. In the end, the show goes on and they all know that Pop is not a one-man band.
Marc Haan – Willy Stall 270
When we where on our way to this bridge Mats said “This looks like a bridge by Calatrava.” and it does but it isn’t. it is what Bats would call a Hoenoe spot. A Hoenoe spot is a spot where Marc Haan will try tricks for hours. This Bank to curb was the perfect Hoenoe spot, because it allowed everyone to cool down in the lake after a long Hoenoe session.
Mats Edel – Bs 360
Whilst skating this spot Pop team rider Willem “Wallem” Dirks told me “When we were growing up skating doing a Backside 360 seemed impossible. Nobody I knew could do one, Looking back now it is kind of weird because in the 90’s it was as much of a standard trick as it is now. Our generation just lost it for a minute.
Bastiaan van Zadelhoff – Bs 360 No Comply
Because most of the crew had to work during the day, Bastiaan a.k.a. Bats a.k.a. Budgetbeuker often found himself in the role of the spotguide, a role he didn’t like. “Yo Bast where are we going?” – “I don’t know man, I am not from here!” I think secretly Bats was quite happy when he had to work, just because he didn’t have to guide us around.
We are happy to announce Peter Buikema from The Netherlands as one of our new interns. Peter was already working for us in Amsterdam last August and just a few weeks later we invited him again to ‘The Dam’ for our release of the new issue.
Together with Alex O’Donahoe, Bobby Groves, Tjark Thielker, Budget Beuker and the rest of the PLACE crew we decided to stay for the long weekend to go out skating, of course. The result is our brand new series “Pete’s B&B” and this is our first episode!
Last week PLACE issue 58 landed in the mail. Tradition says when an issue is done it is time to host a party. This time it had to be Amsterdam. And that was our gut feeling talking. Trust your gut, people! So, when the time came, we linked up with the people from POP Trading Company & G’s to set the right atmosphere, it all turned out well and it was a great evening.
Special Thanks to Levi’s Skateboarding Collection.
A little while ago we saw the release of “Lost in the Dam” a collaborative effort between Pop and Magenta. Today we begin to see things even clearer because pop released their footage from their time with the Magenta guys. Now we can focus on friendship and the importance of working together but instead, we are just going to make a point and say that Noah Bunink did the best line we have seen all year! Ollie up, crooks bonk down, drop the board, pick it up and fs flip the stairs, great! Now it is not only Noah who should get his props, it is also the work of the filmer. Most people would have stopped recording but this guy kept it going and helped create something really nice!
The Dutch homies from Pop Trading Co. Just had a nice little article in the latest Free Mag and to commemorate this event they released a longer Pop clip in collaboration with Free Mag. There is a lot of nice skating in this one but the first line is an Amsterdam classic.
Once again the guys from the Pop Trading Company come through with the newest edition of their famous black and white clips. This time Amsterdam is the city of choice! Featuring: Bastiaan van Zadelhoff, Noah Bunink, Alex Raeymaekers, Mats Edel, Bob Groot, Othmar van Rijswijk and Ali Belhadj.
The Dutch-based brand POP just released their new #03 collection, which focusses on simple but classic designs. The collection has influences ranging from the French breton stripe, American baseball hats and more. The brand combines those items with cargo pants, half zip sweaters and Hugo Snelooper’s street style photography. All in all POP is presenting a strong style build on their skateboard fundament but without fear of looking over skateboardings boarders. The first drop is this Thursday with a new drop every Thursday after that.
People start up new businesses every day, Budgetbeuker bearings was started by Bastiaan van Zadelhoff. We interviewed Bastiaan a while back about starting a company, being a part of Pop Trading Co and his many nicknames. We kept in touch after the interview and a couple of days ago he told me that he had gotten a cease and desist letter from another company that felt like the Budgetbeuker logo was to similar to theirs. The whole thing kind of shocked me! I asked him, why would such a big company care about a small upstart with a logo that was inspired by their own? How did they even find out about his company? What where the consequences? And how can you avoid having to go through similar issues. Bastiaan quickly responded to these questions and answered them all in this interview.
How did things go after you launched the company?
Things went well for some time, that was the best time of my life though!
How did people receive the brand?
Way better than I expected! I have been visiting some shops that carry my product and I was surprised at how much of my product they where selling. I am so happy and grateful for all the love I have received!
After such a great start when did you find out you had a problem?
On the eighth of January I opened my inbox and in that inbox was an email: Notification of IPR Infringement by Envisional Enforcement. An Italian brand (that will remain nameless) had seen my logo and felt that it was to similar to theirs. The email also stated their demands, basically all the products and promo with my old logo had to be taken offline.
Are your logos really that similar?
Well both our logos are based on a compass, the are some other differences but the only real difference is that they copyrighted their logo. So I google them and the first thing I see is that some of their jackets cost more than my initial investment! (laughs) After that I thought it would be better to comply with their request and take my site down.
Do you think this whole episode could have been prevented?
People really took notice, Budgetbeuker went kind of viral. I started to get more followers on Instagram, one of those followers “happened” to be a shop manager for this Italian brand. He possibly started this whole thing, the guy used to skate, he was one of those people who big themselves up and tells crazy (untruthful) stories. Hugo (Snelooper) told me that his friends used to pick on the guy, one night his friends even threw the guy into a swimming pool because he was Dj’ing terribly (laughs). Truthfully I really don’t know what happened, this person denies snitching on me. It could have been somebody higher up, Who knows? The Internet is a crazy place!
Did have to take your product out of the shops?
No but we have to cover the original logo, so I had some stickers made so shops can cover the old logo with these stickers. Once that is done we can keep selling our bearings.
The new Budgetbeuker look with a sticker covering the old logo.
Okay. So what does this mean for the future of the brand?
Well the brand itself suffered because of these issues. We had to drop or change all our product designs that where based on the original logo. I’ve been spending a lot of time troubleshooting, instead of putting that time into growing the brand.
As far as creating a new logo I am not a 100% sure but I am working on it. No matter what design, we will be extra careful! So those Italians are not temped to start some trouble again.
Any last words?
To be honest I never saw myself winning the court case but it felt strangely cool that I got noticed by such a big brand!