Hi Max, thank you for answering our questions. Can you describe the fisherman you are, your favorite types of fishing, your desires, … and how did you come to fishing?
The first thing I have to say is that while I’m writing this I really have a big smile on my lips because fishing is such a big part of my life and as far as I can think back all my thoughts a just around fish, nature and fishing. Where my passion for fishing really started was in the year 1993 when my dad took me fishing at the age of 3 years. Since that day I must have been asking to go fishing practically every day…..this is what they tell me. To describe me as a fisherman I would say “Whatever it takes!” describes my attitude and motivation to be successful on the water the best. When I’m out on my boat casting big lures all day long I stay focused no matter how much effort I have to put in to get this one strike of a big pike because it is so rewarding when you finally hook up and you then know right away what you did it for. This is also my most favorite style of fishing…big lakes…open water…big fish. But due to my job as a product manager I can’t just focus on one style or predator so for me it is at the same time also small streams and fishing with light gear that gives me great satisfaction. This variety is also what is keeping me open minded and innovative on many different styles of lure fishing.
Your job is a dream for many young fishermen! How did you become an employee of DAM?
That I’m working in this position for DAM today is the result of a more than 10 years existing cooperation between DAM and me. I started to be a part of DAM as a pro staffer for MAD (carpfishing brand of DAM) at the age of 15. Back in these days my main focus was on carpfishing but I always had this enthusiasm for lure fishing inside me. Sooner or later my interests were changing dramatically into 100 % predator fishing and I got the opportunity to stay with DAM and work for DAM as an EFFZETT pro staffer. When I now look back that was probably the moment where the direction of my career at DAM was set. In the end it was the great opportunity for DAM and me to realize our visions on the EFFZETT brand that turned me from a heavily involved pro staffer into a product manager.
What exactly is your job?
My job is mainly developing new products which are fitting into our existing range or which are replacing old existing items. This is definitely the most exciting part of the job, but there are also other projects that have to be handled like overworking designs on existing products and so on. In my case it is a lot of lures where I can be very creative on shapes, actions and colors.
What is a typical working day?
A typical working day starts at 8:00 am with answering emails to my far east suppliers to reach them at the same day. Other than that it is keeping track of all running developments and collecting all required information for the catalogue as well as writing catalogue texts.
We would like to have bit more insight into the EFFZETT Optimus range, that has been immensely popular since its launch. What´s the history behind the Optimus range?
One of the main reasons for me to take the decision to make a new EFFZETT flagship rod series was the continuously growing brand awareness of the EFFZETT brand during the last years. This positive feedback from the market on the existing range and all the new and modern lures and many other products that were just waiting to be introduced together with the Optimus rod range lead me to the decision that the time is right to make the next step on EFFZETT rods as well.
What were you looking for when creating this range?
The EFFZETT Optimus rod range is the outcome of the idea of making the perfect rod series for modern lure fishing but with the target of keeping the price in focus at the same time. This was really challenging because super light, slim and fast 40 Ton high modulus carbon blanks in combination with the latest Fuji K-Guides are already setting a certain price level. But I had to go this way to give every single rod the action and balance for the style of fishing it will be most likely used for. In the end I’m the most critical customer myself, so the moment where I convinced myself that this series is worth it to be the new EFFZETT top of the range rod series the Optimus was born.
Rumour has it that initially at DAM they let you work freely on this project, but without much hope… Can we really say that you hast pleased about this project, regardless of any economic hardship?
One thing in general about the “freedom” that I have as a product manager at DAM is that I’m practically allowed to take product development related decisions by myself. In case of the Optimus rods I was convinced from the start that if I manage to get the quality I had in mind for the price I thought of being right we will have a product that can have a very positive effect on the whole image of the EFFZETT brand. I was just following my instinct and took a look on the market from the right angle to make this series happen.
What is your favorite model? Why?
Since my preferred style of fishing is from out of my boat and with a preference for big softlures it is the Lure Shooter that turned into my favorite model for pike fishing. I like this model because it is fulfilling everything I expect from a rod for that purpose, for me that is a good casting ability, the right length of the handle for relaxed but powerful casting and the right length which leads to a relatively low weight for such a strong rod. In combination with the Quick Optimus 301 baitcast reel it is pleasure to cast big lures all day long.
The range also includes a Quick reel. Why? What are the characteristics of this reel?
The Quick Optimus 301 baitcast reel is just the absolute perfect match to the Optimus Lure Shooter. It is a size 300 low profile baitcast reel which is equipped with everything a serious pike angler needs. Starting with the deep spool with enough line capacity even for thick braided lines, followed by a stainless steel main shaft that is built to last and rounded of by solid 12 KG of drag force created by carbon drag washers just to be always ready to set hooks properly and to be in control of the fish when it is needed.
What I really learned to see as great advantage is the little higher gear ratio of 7.3:1 which gives me great control over my lure and also over the fish.
Can we expect to see extended this range in 2017?
Talking about the Optimus rod range it is a “yes”, there will be 2 casting models released in 2017 to really fill the last gaps in the EFFZETT Optimus rod range.
In the Quick brand there will be at least one new baitcast model which is not linked to Optimus range directly, but from a design and function point of view it definitely matches several Optimus casting models.
Not only the rod and reel sections will grow in the DAM 2017 catalogue, there are also loads of lures and other useful accessories waiting to be introduced,
Thank you very much for the interesting interview, Max. We look forward to see the EFFZETT range of products growing and can´t wait to get our hands on your latest developments!
Thank you for interviewing me and sure you will love the new products for 2017!