Many years ago, our friend, colleague and traveler, Jakub Postrzygacz wrote a welcome message for our website (the yellow one, can anyone still recall it?).
In his text, he tried to advertise our panniers to the unconvinced, arguing that it’s not worth overpaying for a logo of an established brand if one can enjoy the same quality and durability for much less money by choosing the product of an unknown Polish manufacturer.
When transferring the contents of the website onto a new platform, I wanted to make things easier for myself and simply copy most of that text (which had great flow, by the way, it’s one of Jakub’s talents), but it turned out that if we had left it as is, we would have displayed either inaccuracy or false modesty. That is beause today, thanks to you, the users of our products, we are the leading manufacturer of bicycle panniers in Poland and we successfully compete with brands from both the West and the Far East.
We are proud that it was possible with close to no advertising. To be honest, at the beginning our boss, Sebastian Sobociński, tried to promote us on a trade fair, but Crosso’s stand with merchandize hung up on a ladder (as there was nothing more suitable in the near hardware store) was left practically unnoticed among monumental constructions of the cycling industry giants.
That didn’t discourage Sebastian, who kept sewing his panniers in the garage. Not out of military canvas, but durable nylon, with a stiffener made not from plywood, but light plastic. Someone bought it, went for a trip, then told his friends that there’s this guy in Białystok who sews great panniers. His friend bought a set, then a friend of a friend… There was a need for an employee. A warehouse was necessary too – not too big though, as all the manufactured goods were sold right away. A children’s garden tent did the trick.
Soon, there were so many orders that we couldn’t keep up with production. That was the moment that was once described with the following words: ‘Soon, we moved from a garage to a modern facility’. The basement in Sebastian’s house sure was much more comfortable, even despite the pipe running across it at the height of 190 cm, which I inspected with my skull on numerous occasions. In the summer, we would be snowed under with orders (pun intended). We would warn our customers that we can’t deliver right away but… in 6 weeks or so. And they waited!
The best materials – we don’t compromise on that. The main structural fabric of our panniers is the original Cordura. We have also taken care of other important elements: unbreakable, impact-resistant stiffeners and buckles, solid steel fittings and reflective elements which do not lose their properties when exposed to water and other weather conditions. All this for the CROSSO panniers to survive many exciting expeditions!
Proven solutions – we don’t want our customers to experiment! We ourselves destroyed more than one prototype during testing to eliminate any weaknesses in the design. So, you can be sure that the product we’re offering is thoroughly tested. Thanks to valuable feedback of our bicycle globtrotter friends, all details are refined in terms of functionality. We focus on simple and effective solutions.
Now, after many years, I can also add: own production. We could have followed the example of other manufacturers of tourist equipment (or every other manufacturer for that matter) and move the production to China, Pakistan or commission the sewing to a factory in Łódź. It would have been cheaper and more convenient, but we don’t do it because we don’t want to. We enjoy what we’re doing. We want to have control over every aspect of the production process. We are proud to be a manufacturer. We are proud that we ourselves are creating products which, thanks to their good quality, may accompany you during the most joyful moments of your holidays.
Crosso is not just panniers. Most of all, it’s people. A great team of friends who cut, mill, sew and glue in a jolly atmosphere. And who get on our bikes and canoes on weekends and during holidays to test the fruits of our labour, not without satisfaction, might I add.
Kamil Pietryszyk, Białystok 2021