Gene Simmons passes the Faction stand at SIA during its last year in Las Vegas

The Faction Collective attended the SIA 09 show for the first time this week. Let's just say it was far from uneventful. For year's people have been asking "Why Las Vegas?" and this year we got a taste of what it was all about. A fantastic venue in the Mandalay Bay, all the players in the ski industry, great new products and exciting after parties. During the first day the Faction crew generated a great level of interest from retailers and distributors checking out the new lineup for 09/10 of skis, poles, and bindings. After the show the industry converged on the Palms Casino for parties sponsored by Freeskier and SIA with legendary singer Perry Farrell.

The next day still relatively fresh after the first 24 hours in Las Vegas the temperature quickly elevated. During the summer Faction co-founder and lead designer decided to make a potential graphic for the 09/10 Big-mountain Thirteen depicting an image of Gene Simmons during his makeup years with the group KISS. Tony made several attempts to reach people in charge of trademark licensing and there was no response. After speaking to his agent Melissa on Wednesday she mentioned "oh I remember seeing something about that,". Rest assured this graphic will not go into production in order to be available for sale until a licensing agreement has been reached upon between Gene Simmons people and Faction IP attorney Darren Jones who worked for years at K2 where he dealt with similar issues.

Legal issues aside, no one can take away the pure genius of this circumstance. Gene Simmons was attending SIA relating to work he does with another SIA exhibiting member and for his A&E reality show "Family Jewels". Whether it was staged or not, Mr.Simmons appeared to have randomly passed the Faction stand and noticed the Thirteen displayed with its likeness to his highly publicized image as lead singer for KISS back in the day. Faction North American team manger Ross Janzen was on hand and had the brief and let's say not less than awkward conversation with Gene SImmons.

Ross said, " He has an intimidating personality with a larger than life persona." later he continued, " As a long time KISS fan Ross summarized it with, "It was mind boggling!" Gene Simmons was professional and curtious despite all the hype happening around him and his entourage of cameras and slightly clad women. It was suprising to him as it was to Ross but Faction really looks forward to reaching an agreement with Gene and seeing him on the pair of Thirteens from SIA which will be sent to him to ski on during one his frequent ski trips to powder mecca Whistler, B.C. Watch out for more media coverage on this funny and exciting event for Faction even as far as the New York Times. Updates on their way.......

The night of celebrities was not finished and The Faction Collective crew including all of us working at the stand and Faction rider Tavis "The Meatsaw" Menzies went back to The Palms Casino for another night of partying. This time the volume got turned up with an appearance by Snoop Dogg sponsored by Skull Candy. The crew got splintered and we had to regroup in the morning at our stand but not too late to meet up with our newest team member Kristi Leskinen who came by to check out her Faction signature model  the "Aria" for 09/10. Kristi proved herself to be the real professional we expected and Faction really looks forward to seeing this icon in the world of womens freestyle developing with us.......

So big thanks to all of those who came by our stand at SIA to check out the new line and get ready for 09/10 orders early in the spring. A big shout out to The Soze Group, one of our North American distributors whom we shared our stand with and last but not least the Snowsports Industries of America group who makes it all happen. See you next year in Denver! Stay tuned for more news and excitement when The Faction Collective shows next year's lineup at ISPO Munich from Feb 1st till the 4th..........


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