Patti Cazzato: Timbuk2

Ask a Brand: Timbuk2, CEO, Patti Cazzato

What separates Timbuk2 from other outdoor brands?

The biggest thing that sets us apart from other outdoor brands is our Made-in-SF custom program and our strong commitment to urban manufacturing in San Francisco’s Mission District. We’ve been making built-to-last bags here since our inception in 1989.

We love the pockets and compartments designed within your backpacks and bags. Is this important for every product? What’s your design process?

Timbuk2’s inaugural design for over 25 years has been the Classic Messenger Bag, built specifically for the needs of a bike messenger on-the-go. One key element has always stayed constant – our steadfast commitment to solving problems for urban mobility. We source trends, colors, and patterns ourselves by leaning on our incredible design team that brings experience from all facets of the business, whether it be fashion, outdoor or industrial design.

Timbuk2 VIP Messenger

Congrats on being CEO of Timbuk2 for 3 years now. What have you learned thus far about your customer?

On the customer side, I’ve learned that in this day in age, the consumer is a lot more conscious of what they choose to purchase. Quality and sustainability have become the forefront of consumer consciousness. We also live in a world where people are used to obtaining anything with a press of a button. That is why we have our custom program, to give the consumer exactly what they want in a responsible and environmentally-friendly way.

Quality and sustainability have become the forefront of consumer consciousness.

Did you feel any pressure being the first female CEO of such an established brand?

At Timbuk2, I work with some of the most diverse, talented, creative and progressive individuals. They inspire me every day to keep pushing the boundaries and reinventing the brand. All of my previous experience has led me to this final journey.

From my work with eco-visionaries, Doug and Susie Tompkins of North Face to the development of my own organic clothing line, Clary Sage Organic, my experiences have taught me countless lessons of patience, strategy, and respect – all characteristics that are vital to my role today.

Timbuk2 Parker Pack

Timbuk2 Parker Pack Black

Your social media branding is fantastic! How important is social media to you?

It is critical! Social media is important to us because it is important for our customers. Digital marketing is another way we can connect with our audience. Social media is a great platform in which we can authentically tell our story, share trends and interact directly with customers.

Have you considered apparel and shoes for the brand?

Yes, we have! But there is still such an incredible opportunity within the bag industry, especially with the female consumer that we’ve just started to tap into. Apparel and shoes are definitely sectors we’ve explored before, but until we achieve total domination in the bag industry, we’d like to keep our focus here!

Do you care to share what we should expect next?

This year, we launched our Future Shapers campaign, consisting of a series of inspiring collaborations with artists and creatives who we feel uplift their communities with the work that they create. Most recently we launched a special capsule collection with San Francisco street artist, Apexer and plan to continue launching unique collaborations throughout the year.

In addition, our Fall 2017 collection is coming together and will feature a plethora of travel-ready gear perfect for inspiring you to embark on your next adventure!

Founded by SF bike messenger Rob Honeycutt, TIMBUK2 created the iconic messenger bag in 1989. Since then, they’ve been making bags built to last a lifetime right in the Mission District of San Francisco, California.