Edouard Pan, the mind behind Birdy Polo
The French high season left us anecdotes, hundreds of hours of content and many stories to tell. One of them is that of Edouard Pan, local polo player and owner of the Birdy Polo brand, a common denominator of the clothing of almost all French teams. The name was born to pay homage to a horse and the road to success in polo clothing. HERE TO SEE THE SPANISH VERSION
How was Birdy Polo born?
It was born in 2015; I always liked the theme of the t-shirts and organize that for the patrons with which I was playing. I made shirts for them so that they would like them and be comfortable, but although I traveled a lot to Argentina it was a little complicated for me to do things, most of them were in Argentina and it was not easy for the patrons to get organized. So I decided to do and I started, first for the skipper with whom I played mainly and gradually the idea of doing for other teams that began to ask me.
Which was the first team you dressed?
The first team I think was Jivaro, Christophe Allemandou's team, my patron with whom I've been playing for ten years and with whom I started to do things. Then, at that time I was playing with Alex Sztarkman here in France and that was one of the first big orders we made, with jerseys and everything that goes around. This was at the same time I was playing in Dubai and that was also a big order we made around the same time.
What is your mother product or what are you strongest in?
The mother product is the T-shirts, which is the base with which we start our work. After that, I think the bags are very good, they are similar to other brands, but the material is very good and we have many orders for them. Also the white pants, which we develop separately; there is a special and specific production where we work a lot. These pants are very popular, in fact we sell them in several countries, there are many players using them, some of them are high level players like Sapo Caset who this year asked us to make them for him because he likes them very much.
You are a French company recognized in the local environment, what is the goal of the brand?
Now the goal is to develop the brand, we are quite well organized in France, we have many teams and people who trust us and whom we thank. In the rest of Europe we are starting to do more things, we still need to be a bit more international although we reach several countries. We want the development of the brand to be as big as possible.
Who are the brand ambassadors?
We are starting with the ambassador theme. We have always had many players who have supported us, French players like Pierre Ngoumou, Clement Delfosse, Patrick Paillol, they are a bit like ambassadors because they use the brand and give us a hand because they play all over the world and that is very good. Then it is important that the teams to which we make things there are very good players who are using our things as Sapo Caset for example this year in England, Facu Sola, Facundo Fernandez Llorente, Jeta Castagnola, Jero Del Carril, Dieguito Cavanagh and many players so obviously they are not official ambassadors but when they use the things it is very good.
To advance a little bit, this year we are going to have Elena Venot, one of the best French players, who will be playing the Argentine Women's Open, she will be an official ambassador for Birdy from this year on.
Important teams you have sponsored?
We made many teams, the truth is that for us all the teams are important, we want the service to be the same for a team that plays low as for those who play high. Obviously it is very good to work with large projects, where we develop many products that we cannot do with smaller organizations. Among the best known teams, we made shirts for Talandracas, and this year we made many things for La Magdeleine, who played the top flight in England. At the time we also made things for Al Habtoor, a lot of bags and other things. We also worked quite a lot of things for Sainte Mesme, which is a very big French organization. That's some of what we did with big teams and obviously we're going for more. Polo in France is developing very well, Kazak is a team that is growing and to which we do several things; obviously Mungo too and there are many more.
When you realize that the products were working?
When we started making the first t-shirts for Jivaro, my patron's team, and they started asking us for them. That was very good when the other teams came to us asking if we could make some things for them.
Do you have physical stores?
We don't have an official store yet, but we are present at the Polo Club in Chantilly, which is where I mainly play and play, I have a store there with things and also in Argentina we sell white pants at the J&M store in Pilar. We work a lot with them, Birdy is also an official seller of J&M mallets in France, we always have a stock of their mallets of all models and it is an interesting part of Birdy.
How does the e-commerce work?
We have a website and at the moment you can only buy the white pants, the caps and some other products that we are developing as a collection. This year we are going to have many more from November, we are going to add more models. Our work is customization, so we have few collections and the page is more for contact, so that the teams can communicate with us to develop a project and see a little of what we are doing.
Deauville Gold Cup Tedelou by Birdy
Barriere y Mungo by Birdy
In Europe do you work without shipping restrictions? What are the delivery times?
We ship all over Europe and all over the world, but in Europe there is no shipping cost for basic orders, but for larger orders it is a different organization. The delivery times depend a lot because the polo is sometimes very rushed, basically they are usually between three and four weeks, but also in cases of emergency or things like that are made much faster and we adapt. The heart of our job is to adapt and be there for the teams that support us, so we try to get a solution for whatever it is.
What is your reach outside the continent?
Our strength is in Europe, but we also did a lot of things for several teams in Dubai, in the United States we did work in California for the Antelope team that came to play a lot in France and now they ask us for several products. In Argentina as well because I travel often and I am there almost every season and because of the agreement we have with J&M we are very present. On the other hand, we send several orders to Australia and South Africa, for the moment maybe they are specific places but the idea is to develop, to become bigger and to send to the whole world.
How did you come up with the name of the brand?
The brand is called Birdy Polo because of a horse that was the best I had, his name was El Pajarito and just when I created the brand he passed away. He was a very good horse with which I played a lot, I won the three French Open in a row and when I started the brand he died playing. As pajarito in Spanish is a bit complicated to pronounce, we changed it to Birdy and I thought it was very nice to be able to take him everywhere.
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By Francisco del Valle
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