How Product Collaborations Happen

The old saying goes that if you want to get better, you should try to work with the best people. That’s because when you collaborate with new personalities, you expand your horizons, encounter new ideas, and experiment with alternatives you’re yet to discover. The parallel between this and travel is pretty striking. Meeting new people. Exploring new ideas. Uncovering new destinations. As lovers of both travel and continual improvement, Pacsafe has teamed up with some amazing brands over the years. Quiksilver, Diamond Supply, Rowing Australia, Carryology and AIGLE just to name a few. They’ve all brought something new to the mix. To explore how those partnerships come about, we sat down with Pacsafe’s Executive VP of Global Product, Phil Hayes, on how product collaborations happen. Here’s some insight from Phil about searching out and creating amazing product collaborations. 


Pacsafe have worked with a wide variety of brands. How do you choose partners to work with? Do you approach them, or do they approach you?

It’s a bit of both but mainly we are approached, lucky for us we are the original anti-theft bag company and have all the best tech fully protected. In terms of selecting the right fit, we ask if its can we add value to each other’s brands. For example, Angry Lane makes custom motorcycles and sell products for bikes. No-one out there was providing security for helmets. When you go riding, park, and shop, where is the helmet? It’s a pain carrying it, but it’s either that or risk it being stolen. We helped provide a solution and Angry Lane introduced us to a whole new market of motorcycle users. 

Similarly, Quiksilver and Diamond Supply are both active sports brands based primarily on skate and surf. When you are in the water or in the bowl, where is your bag, wallet, phone, computer? Again, we provided a solution for this, which in turn helped their customers and introduced us to a new market.

What’s the process working like with different partners?

Like every design project, it has its challenges, but in the end, we all learn something and come up with a product we are all proud of. It’s actually really exciting working with other brands and utilizing all the amazing technology we own into other products. Often the coolest creations are when you bring two existing things together to make something new. This is definitely a lot like that.

How much is the Pacsafe design team and how much is the other brand bringing in ideas? 

This varies – in some instances, we do everything apart from colors and linings, but in most cases, it’s a true collaboration. Going back to the Angry Lane guys, they were super hands-on, looking at features that work for motorbike riders. One small, but really neat adjustment, they helped with was adding little velcro keepers on the straps to stop them flapping in the wind. A detail most people wouldn’t normally think about otherwise.  

What’s one collaboration you’re particularly proud of in how it turned out?

Probably the 40L Carryon we did with Quiksilver. It not only combined two of my loves in life; travel and surfing, but we also got to see reviews from the likes of Gear Patrol that say: “…I’ve been traveling with Pacsafe and Quiksilver’s collaboration 40L pack and it’s nothing short of perfect.” We also won the reader’s choice award for best carryon 2018 by Carryology.

The other would be the Carryology Brief – that one was so good it sold out globally in 4 days.

What’s one of the best things you’ve learned from another brand during a collaboration that you now use in general bag design?

Don’t be afraid of bright lining colors! Also, we have learned how valuable our anti-theft technology is. There are many crew out there copying us now but we still have the best and it really shows when we start working with other brands who really appreciate what we are offering.

Anything exciting on the horizon you’re able to give some hints about?

Yes! We’re about to release a collab with Lew from Unboxed Therapy. A few years back he claimed our Z400 Brief as the best in the market, so we have worked with him to actually top this and the result is killer. Lew has 15 million subscribers to his Youtube Channel, so it’s going to be very interesting.

To check out some of the collaborations Pacsafe have available now, head here. 

And, keep an eye out for the Unbox Therapy release very soon. 

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