An Orange County Original
The natural beauty and location of Orange County make it an ideal setting for sports enthusiasts and the action-apparel industry that caters to their needs.
Popular brands such as Quicksilver, OP, Vans, Oakley, Volcom, Hurley, Billabong, and Rip Curl provide customers with clothing suited to an active lifestyle and particular sport with designs in eye wear, motocross, surf gear, skateboarding, and more. Combined, these eight companies employ nearly 5,300 people and can either trace their beginnings back to Orange County or are currently headquartered in the county.
Of note, Oakley is a major driver in Orange County’s action apparel industry, with 1,700 people working in Orange County alone as of 2019. Founded in 1975, Oakley strives to combine science and enthusiasm for an active lifestyle to create revolutionary performance products that go beyond conventional industry standards. Today, their products extend to items with high performance and functionality beyond the sports arena such as sunglasses and prescription lenses and frames.
Orange County’s vibrant action sports industry was strengthened with the 2013 relocation of Fox Head’s headquarters from Morgan Hill to Irvine. As reported by the Orange County Business Journal, Fox Head’s annual revenue is estimated at $200 million or more on sales at various apparel retailers and motocross stores, and the company also has 14 of its own stores in the U.S.
In 2014, several Orange County based companies were recognized at the 11th annual Surf Industry Manufacturers Association (SIMA) Image Awards. As the only awards program of its kind, the goal of the SIMA Image Awards is to identify the surf industry’s most influential companies and recognize them for their efforts to advance and grow the industry during the past year. Orange County companies recognized by SIMA included:
Men’s Apparel Brand of the Year
Men’s Boardshort of the Year
Phantom Fuse 2 by Hurley
Men’s Marketing Campaign of the Year
“Camp Tokyo” by Roark Revival
Men’s Retailer of the Year
Huntington Surf & Sport
Women’s Apparel Brand of the Year
Women’s Marketing Campaign of the Year
“My Bikini” by Rip Curl
Women’s Swim Brand of the Year
L*Space by Monica Wise
Accessory Product of the Year
Footwear Product of the Year
Surf Siders by Vans
Wetsuit of the Year
Flash Bomb Plus by Rip Curl