Worldclass – the exciting company presentation by the Stöckli CEO, Marc Gläser, began with this rather immodest statement. Stöckli not only wants to be a world class ski manufacturer, but also world class in sales, distribution, partnerships with dealers and athletes, and last but not least a world class employer. Stöckli looks back on more than 80 years of company tradition.

Today, more than 60,000 pairs of skis are manufactured each year at the Ski Manufaktur in Malters. Most of the work steps are carried out manually with extraordinary precision, a great deal of sensitivity and even more passion by highly motivated employees with many years of experience.

We are proud to point out that Stöckli is now a serious player in the highly competitive international ski market. Top skiers, such as the 2017/2018 World Cup winner Viktoria Rebensburg, or the two-time downhill world champion 2017/2019, Ilka Stuhec, rely entirely on Stöckli. But one of them is specifically mentioned: Marco Odermatt, 6-time Junior World Champion and last year already twice on the podium in the adult competition –  great Swiss talent!

Marc Gläser, the boss and partner at Stöckli for five years now, radiates an enthusiasm for his company, his products and his employees that is contagious and confirms his claim to be world class. After a one-hour, extremely interactive session with many questions and always precise, open and honest answers, we unfortunately had to finish the first part.

Unfortunately, only because we didn’t know yet what to expect during the guided tour through the production! Walter Schaller, former production manager at Stöckli with more than 20 years of experience, today responsible for the support of the 15 own Stöckli shops, guided us through the production. We learn about the high-quality materials used to make Stöckli skis. So that a Stöckli ski is not only a pleasure for the demanding skier, but also meets the highest demands of top ski athletes, special attention is paid to the smallest details.

When, for example, the Föhn blows through the valley, the temperatures rise and the air humidity drops, experienced employees adjust the pressure of the machine to glue the skis, so that at the end the ski is produced with exactly the pre-tension that is optimal. Each ski is assembled by hand, 10 layers in the wooden core. Before the ski is carefully shrink-wrapped at the end of production to protect it from damage on the way to a passionate skier, each individual piece is subjected to a final quality control and given a unique identification number – each ski is unique!

After the super exciting presentation and guided tour, we had the opportunity to talk shop with the Stöckli specialists at a small apéro. The visit to Stöckli was really world class! Many thanks to the representatives from Stöckli.

On Friday evening, in typical EMBA Alumni manner, we had a cosy dinner, which we concluded at the fireplace of the Hotel Bellevue in Engelberg. Around midnight the lights went out, finally the next day together with the Stöckli Ski Test Centre in Engelberg the newest Stöckli skis were tested.

Saturday morning greeted us with a Foehn storm, wind speeds up to 140 km/h on the Titlis. Official announcement by Engelberg-Titlis Tourismus AG: Due to stormy winds, all lifts and slopes will be closed today. That was it – ski testing had to be cancelled in the truest sense of the word.

After a rich breakfast buffet, the slightly disappointed group of ski testers made their way home. A little consolation: Patrik Hauert, Chief Sales Officer at Stöckli, has promised us to make up for the ski testing in March 2020. After all, we want to experience for ourselves what world class feels like on the slopes.

Well then, until March 2020!

Text: Eric Schinzel

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