Wednesday, December 14, 2005


Oakley Hemi Funny Car
and Head Office

I had a chance to recently visit Oakley at their head quarters in Foothill Ranch CA. My perspective on the company totally changed after taking a tour of the company. Not only do they make sick looking sunglasses, they are actually very hi tech! Every concept, development, testing and manufacturing of their glasses are all done in house. Nothing is outsourced. Their glasses are their core business so they do not let anyone near it. Not to mention they have a million patents too. They even have a self sustained environment at their head quarters. That means they can fix every thing in house, like their own airconditioning system or lunch tables for that matter.
The first thing you notice after driving up to their office is that it looks like an Oakley astronomical obsertatory. (Photo: With cool Ducati parked out front) Once you go inside, the the Oakley Hemi powered drag car catches your eye on the back wall. Right behind the lobby is a big auditorium where we basically sat down and got brainwashed by these cool extreme sport images and music. Got me pumping and also thinking about what our motorsports content can do with Oakley, real seriously. Joses was our guide for the day and he taught us a lot of things we did not know. All the research and testing that go behind each pair of shades are pretty impressive. We especially liked the beebee gun test. There is a rubber dummy that you put shades on and a machine spits out a metal ball at it at 200mph. The Oakley shades bounces the ball off while some "competitors" glasses cannot withstand it. Next time I get shot at with a beebee gun I'll make sure to have my Oakleys on. : ) We finished the tour with lunch at their caffeteria in front of the NBA approved full size indoor basket ball court where guests and employees are free to shoot hoops. It was truly a cool experience. I have more respect for Oakley than ever now.

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