Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology, at his house in Malibu, CA, on January 9, 2009.  Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.

Sole Technology and its founder/CEO, Pierre André Senizergues

Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.

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It was founded in 1986 by Frenchman Pierre André Senizergues, 45, who came to the United States a year earlier to become one of the premier professional freestyle skateboarders. Senizergues began skateboarding at the age of 15 in his hometown of L'Hay-les-Roses, just outside Paris in France. He later obtained an engineering degree from the Institut Universitaire de Technologie Paris XI. During his career, Senizergues won 12 French Championships, nine European Cup Titles, five European Championships, two World Cup Events and one World Championship.

In 1988, Pierre André Senizergues began riding and designing skate shoes for the newly launched French shot brand, etnies, including his first pro model, the Senix, and other key styles. They were created with skateboarders in mind and consisted of a unique blend of fashion, durability and quality. A year later, Senizergues began distribution throughout the U.S. and later gained full rights to the etnies name worldwide. He later launched additional footwear and apparel brands, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo, and consolidated all under the Sole Technology umbrella. Today, Sole Technology is based in Lake Forest, California, with over 400 employees and US$200 million in revenues.

Senizergues has taken footwear technology to another level with the development of the Sole Technology Institute (STI), the world’s first and only biomechanics research facility dedicated to studying the impacts of skateboarding and other action sports on the human body.

The 10,000 square foot laboratory has state-of-the-art testing equipment and a variety of obstacles like mini ramps, handrails, stairs and ledges. STI studies every successful landing and fall in order to get a better understanding and learn more about the movements and impacts incurred by action sports athlete’s bodies.

Senizergues is an ardent advocate of the environment and he devotes resources to implement an aggressive sustainability strategy with a full commitment to corporate responsibility. This goal is achieved with the installation of over 600 solar panels on top of the main building, the conversion to water-based cement manufacturing, the introduction of waterless urinals, the launch of a sustainable footwear and apparel collection, the etnies SEED Project, and the conduct of an eco-audit to study the impact of the company's business practices to develop more environmentally friendly solutions.

Pierre André Senizergues also dedicates resources to the youth with the construction of the 40,000 square-foot etnies Skate park of Lake Forest located at Sole Technology’s headquarters. Entrance is free of charge.

Senirzegues lives in the Los Angeles Area with his girlfriend Sara Sheen and their 4-month old son Mateo.


Text by Mimi Rohr
© Mimi Rohr

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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,  in his creative room at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. He is laying down on one of his creations, a long chair made of elements in the shape of skateboards. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,  in his creative room at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. He is laying down on one of his creations, a long chair made of elements in the shape of skateboards. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology, in his office at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(L) discussing with staffers Patty Juhasz-Brand, Product Manager-etnies Surf (center) and Stacey Arthur-Brand, Product Manager-etnies Kids Footwear,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(R) discussing with staffers Patty Juhasz-Brand, Product Manager-etnies Surf (L) and Stacey Arthur-Brand, Product Manager-etnies Kids Footwear (center),at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(L) with Michelle Fong-Footwear Developer,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(center) discussing with Dennys Hahn,Senior Footwear Designer (L) and Rick Marmolijo,Senior Footwear Designer (R) ,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(R) greet with a hug staffer Jaleh Naasz, Apparel Designer-etnies Girl,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(R) with Jaleh Naasz, Apparel Designer-etnies Girl,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Pierre André Senizergues,founder and CEO of Sole Technology,(R) with Kirk Nozaki-Senior Apparel Designer-eS,at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Ten Tenorio, Apparel Graphic Designer etnies/éS, at work at Sole Technology in Lake Forest, CA, on January 7, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Test skateboarders at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Test skateboarders at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Skateboarder wearing a special suit with motion capture markers that will be recorded by a seven-camera 3-D motion capture system during a biomechanical test at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Skateboarder wearing a special suit with motion capture markers that will be recorded by a seven-camera 3-D motion capture system during a biomechanical test at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Jeremy Determan, Lab Manager at Sole Technology Institute, collecting motion capture data  during the a biomechanical test at the lab of STI lab  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. The data collected through motion capture markers will allow him to measure the 3-D motions and movements of a skateboarder in action. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Skateboarder wearing a special suit with motion capture markers that will be recorded by a seven-camera 3-D motion capture system during a biomechanical test at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Jeremy Determan, Lab Manager at Sole Technology Institute, collecting motion capture data  during a biomechanical test at the lab of STI lab  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. The data collected through motion capture markers allow him to measure the 3-D motions and movements of a skateboarder in action.  Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Skateboarder warming up before a biomechanical test at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Inside the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Scotty Cox, Assistant Lab Manager, (foreground) and Jeremy Determan, Lab Manager, working inside their lab  at the Sole Technology Institute in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009.   Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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A shoe on a rotating plate is being tested for repetitive wear against a skateboard at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Analyzing the forefoot stiffness of a skate shoe on the flex testing machine at the lab of Sole Technology Institute  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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Jeremy Determan, Lab Manager at Sole Technology Institute, inserting a shoe under STI's custom built high impact testing machine at the lab of STI lab  in Lake Forest, CA, on January 8, 2009. This machine is used to measure the cushioning properties of skate shoes.  Sole Technology is the world’s largest privately owned action sport footwear and apparel company represented in more than 70 countries. Its seven top brands include etnies, etnies Girl, etnies Plus, éS, Emerica, Altamont Apparel and ThirtyTwo.
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