Sea to Summit adds Josh Simpson as new Water Sports Division Manager

Co-founder of Traction joins team based in Boulder, Colo.; Traction’s sales and marketing operations also relocated from Australia

Boulder, Colo. - In response to both coastal and inland water sports growth, Sea to Summit has created a Water Sports Division with Josh Simpson as its new manager.

In 2007, Sea to Summit North America expanded its offering of water sports gear as the exclusive distributor of SPT Lockable Tie Down Straps and Traction, manufacturers of kayak/canoe storage systems, to the existing range of Sea to Summit dry bags and related paddling gear.

Sales for the company in this category have grown substantially during the previous two years. Andrew Dunbar, president of Sea to Summit, sees even greater potential in the future.

“We have some unique products to offer to paddle and surf retailers with the same powerful merchandising story that gained us so much market share with outdoor retailers. Josh brings significant personal business experience to our team as an owner and operator of a paddling store during his previous 7 years in Australia. He is the perfect choice to grow these brands with paddling and surf retailers because he's been in their shoes,” Dunbar said.

Simpson co-founded Traction in 2006 with Simon Ilsley in Melbourne, Australia where he was based before relocating to Boulder. Simpson will continue his role as a principal in Traction conducting that company's international sales and marketing operations from Boulder.

Sea to Summit Inc. brings more than a decade of innovative essentials to the U.S. as a manufacturer and distributor of Australian gear

For the past 15 years, Sea to Summit has been the leading manufacturer of thoughtfully designed, lightweight backpacking and adventure travel gear in Australia and serving as a North American distributor of Australian gear manufacturers who share the same passion and quality. As the founding sponsor, Sea to Summit helped introduce the Leave No Trace concept of minimal environmental impact to Australia in 2003. The company was named in honor of co-founder Tim Macartney-Snape's incredible 1990 solo expedition from the Bay of Bengal in India to the top of Mt. Everest. Sea to Summit constantly strives to meet the needs of the hard-core minimalist, as well as the discerning traveler who demands gear that's reliable, versatile and durable – all in the smallest load possible. Whether your adventures take you to the sea or to a summit or places in between, Sea to Summit, Traction Gear and Stick Protection Technology products will more than earn their space in your bag and gear closet. Find Sea to Summit at retailers coast-to-coast by visiting a list which can be found on

Traction Gear of Australia is distributed in the U.S. by Sea to Summit, Inc.

The original AquaRacks were developed by Josh Simpson in 2003 as a way to merchandise and protect his kayak, canoe and surfboard inventory from damage and scratching as an alternative to homemade wooden racks typically used for retail display. In the back of his store, Simpson created a simple and versatile solution that not only worked as a retail display, but as a product he could sell to his customers as a home storage solution. The appeal of a product that could be used as a store fixture and something to offer to customers was soon recognized by other retailers and Simpson began getting requests to produce the AquaRacks for the Australian paddle sports market. Simpson partnered with Simon Ilsley in 2006 to expand their business and together they created the Traction brand, which now includes AquaSlings and the GrandStand, in addition to the AquaRacks. Later in 2006, Sea to Summit in Perth became their exclusive Australian distributor. Headquartered in Melbourne, Australia, Traction products are now in over 400 paddle and surf shops throughout Australia, New Zealand and North America.