Prior to our involvement with the Nantahala Outdoors Center, the NOC had a long history of being the premier provider of Outdoor Adventures and producing many Olympic athletes. It was the place to learn to raft and experience the outdoors. Over time, the NOC’s brand suffered as the company became over leveraged and lost its dedication to the founding mission. An undefined guest experience and a lack of process led to the failure of its core philosophy. With our investment, we pushed to recalibrate the culture of NOC to deliver the level of expertise and customer service that the brand was originally built on. As a result, the brand has returned to its core tenets. We are changing people’s lives as they truly experience the outdoors for the first time, and additionally, the company’s financial goals have matched this internal success.
The culture change at the NOC revolved around its strategic values. Five Stand assisted the management team in implementing a series of standards regulating the hiring process and the delivery of the guest experience. This process established benchmarks by which the company and the employees would be measured against and held accountable. We then created metrics to measure whether or not these standards were being adhered to and delivered upon. Over time, we created a culture built on exceeding these standards. The result was tremendous, and the NOC is now recognized again for its top of the line customer service and authentic outdoor experience.
Five Stand Capital invested in the Nantahala Outdoor Center after a period of turmoil following the retirement of the company founders. They have brought stability to the NOC and restored the confidence of the employees in the future of the company. Clay Courts and Jerry Harrison, the partners in Five Stand Capital, have personally spent an amazing amount of time in hands on work at the NOC and in mentoring the leadership team. I have been most pleased to see the degree to which they have attempted to maintain the values and vision of the company founders.
Founder and retired President
Nantahala Outdoor Center