How long has Habrok
been making gis?
My great grandfather started manufacturing soccer balls for the British colonist in South Asia (present-day Pakistan & India) and other sporting goods in the early 1900s. Thanks to abundant cotton production, the textile industry has exploded in Pakistan over the last twenty or thirty years. Gi production has shifted away from China and Brazil to Pakistan, and our family was among the first to produce jiu-jitsu gis in Pakistan many years ago.
You had mentioned to me before, your story of coming to the United States. Do you mind sharing that with our readers?
I’m a firm believer that the American dream is still very much alive for those who are willing to bend down and grab it. If you can dream it, you can live it. I always believed in that. Habrok represents that dream, that passion, and ambition. When my family migrated here back in 1999, we had only $100 to our name and lived in a car garage with a family of five in California, two parents and two brothers. Habrok represents much more than a brand to me and my family. Growing up I always admired successful brands like Nike and Adidas. The stories behind how they started are very inspiring. I am writing my own story now. Who knows? One day I hope you will interview some other entrepreneur who was inspired by our story.
Why did you decide to
launch a US operation?
Well, I spent all my childhood until the age of 17 in Pakistan. I grew up in a family of manufacturers of sporting goods. My father himself spent all his life, I think he started working in his dad’s factory at the age of 14, learning the craft of the business. I used to spend my evenings and off days from school at his office learning and observing him in his factory. I always wondered growing up why or how come no one ever starts their own brand in other countries. When you grow up with all different brands being manufactured, you are somewhat infused and infatuated with them. So after spending over 18 years living in the USA, I think it was about time to live my childhood dream and launch our own brand. I knew right there and then that if not now, then never. So, in March of 2016 we started planning the roots of Habrok Inc. Finally, in March of 2017 we launched our brand.
What are your plans and goals for Habrok moving forward?
Our goals are to keep serving the jiu-jitsu community with quality products and designs. We have some really cool stuff in the making that we are excited about in 2018. We started off as a jiu-jitsu brand, but we are planning to expand our scope to MMA and fitness apparel in the coming years.