A lot of skaters hang their hats on being entrepreneurs these days. While names like Rob Dyrdek and Tony Hawk come to mind, Keith Hufnagel is one of the most successful there is. He built a million-dollar business through his sneaker shop turned brand turned footwear line. He’s taken Lakai under HUF’s umbrella. And he relaunched the ‘90s cult favorite Metropolitan Wheels as a clothing brand a few years back. Huf breaks down where he’s going with it all at the end of his new interview with the Chrome Ball Incident.
Honestly, I’m just going to continue building these brands.
Huf still has a lot more things to do. Right now, it’s this kinda funny balance for me of watching it grow while also making sure that it’s still on the right track. Because it’s pretty easy for a growing company to lose its way. So I do a lot of policing my own brand these days to be sure that doesn’t happen. We just have a lot going on. We’re opening up more retail stores and doing more events… trying to make our brand better. But that’s where my focus is, maintaining that right vision while helping out with the process as much as I can.
Lakai is right there in the mix, too. We’re trying to help them grow as much as possible as well to become a bigger brand. It’s gone through a lot of changes over the years but there’s still so much value there.
Metropolitan will continue on its path as well. We’re gonna probably make some wheels soon because people keep asking us to, but that’s not going to be Metropolitan’s focus anymore. I’m not trying to compete with Spitfire but we do want to honor our heritage with some limited reissue wheels or whatever… which is pretty funny to say. (laughs)
I have a lot of stuff going on, for sure. But I wouldn’t want it any other way.
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Photo shot by Ryan Allen