|Industry||Camping and leisure|
|Headquarters||Christchurch, New Zealand|
|Products||Camping, walking and mountaineering equipment|
Macpac Wilderness Equipment is a brand specialising in outdoor recreational equipment. It is best known for camping and travel equipment including backpacks, sleeping bags and technical clothing. Macpac was originally a New Zealand company, but has been owned by UK-based Mouton Noir Ltd since February 2008.
Macpac's roots can be traced to New Zealander Bruce McIntyre, who began designing his own outdoor gear after he left university aged 19 In 1973. In 1975 he was involved with developing gear for a group of young men from the Canterbury Mountaineering Club who were heading to the South American Andes. The result was New Zealand’s first internal frame climbing pack – the Torre Egger.
McIntyre extended the Torre Egger concept to suit trampers and travellers as well. He focused on customer service and product quality. By 1978, sales were growing at 100% a year and Macpac was unable to keep up with demand. Nevertheless, McIntyre headed to Australia to develop the company’s first export market. In 1987, he began exporting to the Netherlands and Switzerland, soon followed by Germany and the UK.
Macpac designs and manufactures a range of outdoor equipment, from backpacks to lightweight adventure tents.
In 2003, Macpac moved the majority of its production to Asia, shedding 150 jobs in Christchurch. McIntyre, now the managing director, blamed a 40% rise in the New Zealand dollar and a slow-down in international travel.
In February 2008 the company was sold to UK-based Mouton Noir, which had already purchased another popular New Zealand brand, Fairydown Equipment Ltd. Macpac products are no longer available through third party retailers, and instead are now sold directly by Mouton Noir along with new Fairydown gear in Macpac branded stores.