Burton will shift premium snowboard production from its small, Vermont based Burton Manufacturing Center (BMC) to Austria, where the company has been building snowboards for more than 25 years. Forty three employees will be affected by BMC’s closure.
The decision means Burton will no longer make boards in the U.S., aside from a relatively small number of prototypes.
Product design and development will still be home-grown in Vermont, where the company will relocate its snowboard prototyping resources from BMC into a new, purely R&D-driven prototype facility at its global headquarters in Burlington.
“When I started Burton Snowboards in 1977, all we did was make snowboards in Vermont,” said Jake Burton Carpenter, founder and chairman of Burton Snowboards. “Thanks to the BMC staff, weve excelled at prototyping and developing product in Vermont, which is why all four Burton Olympic half-pipe medals were won on snowboards coming out of our local factory. But simply put, it costs us significantly more to produce a board in Vermont than we are capable of selling it for.
The relocated BMC R&D facility will continue to turn riders ideas into the most advanced prototypes on snow, with the added benefit of having all prototyping resources under one roof at Burton’s global headquarters.
“Our biggest priority at Burton is to make the best product for snowboarders, and we do that by listening to riders and investing more in research and development than anyone in our industry,” said Burton CEO Laurent Potdevin.