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Make friends in high places-that's how sports bag companyOGIO blew open the doors to the "in crowd." Looking for acompany that shared his style, OGIO founder and CEO Mike Prattpitched überbrand Ducati Motorcycles a cross-promotion thecompany couldn't resist. Soon, Ducati hangtags adorned 150,000OGIO golf bags, and golf shops housed gleaming motorcycle displays.Ducati even offered up a Supersport 900 motorcycle as the grandprize of an OGIO contest.
Hip by association, this youthful and aggressive company wasgetting everyone's attention. The company forged new allianceswith Yamaha and Mongoose dirt bikes. Popular golf equipmentmanufacturer Callaway Golf also approached OGIO, which designedCallaway's bestselling golf bag ever-and now makes 90 percentof Callaway bags. Snowboarding, skateboarding and motocross proshave also hooked up with the company, which now designs gear bagsfor those sports, too.
"We've always been known for quality and fresh designs,but we never had the brand," explains Pratt, 40. "The[turning] point was aligning ourselves with cool brands outside the[golf] industry." Sales for this Bluffdale, Utah, business hit$51 million in 2001-and you can bet that with each new ally,Pratt's thinking, "This is the beginning of a beautifulfriendship."