The Slovenia Times

Ski producer Elan opens alpine skiing museum


The Elan Alpine Skiing Museum is located in Begunje na Gorenjskem, where the company has its production unit, and makes Elan the first ski producer with its own museum.

Ski division director Leon Korošec said the museum was important because "Slovenia has an important place in the history of skiing and development of skiing equipment."

Elan was set up in 1945 upon the initiative of ski jumper and ski maker Rudi Finžgar and has since been known for innovation and trend-setting.

The company has put on the market a number of products whose technology, design and characteristics have made alpine skiing history.

"The museum shows what we have done in the past and from where we get inspiration for the future," Korošec said at a news conference ahead of the museum launch.

The museum also showcases achievements of Elan's other divisions, including boats, air planes, sports equipment and wind turbines.

Put on display are also skis with which Slovenian and foreign skiers have competed and won, including the first pair with which Stenmark competed in World Cup races.

"I remember them with fondness, having won several races with them," the legendary skier said at the news conference in Begunje na Gorenjskem, north-west.

Some of the skis on display belong to his rival on skiing slopes and friend Bojan Križaj, who in 1980 secured Slovenia the first-ever World Cup victory.

"I'm happy to be part of Elan's history," said Križaj, noting that Elan was known for innovation and that he had never thought of competing with any other skis.

The idea for Elan to have its own museum came as the Slovenian Museum of Technology put up an exhibition to mark Elan's 70th anniversary.

Elan's new owners - Wiltan Enterprises Limited or the fund VR Capital - have supported the idea ever since it was floated in mid-2016.

"This is their way of giving something back not only to the region [of Gorenjska] but also to the entire Slovenia," said Elan CEO Jeffrey Tirman.

"It is our goal to create a space where Slovenians and foreigners can see an important part of Slovenian and sports history."

Elan is to get new owners soon. Tirman said there was a lot of interest in the company, but could not reveal more details because the sale process is ongoing.

However, he said back in April that Elan or some of its divisions would get a strategic owner by the end of the year.


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