2018 OLYMPICS

Utah businessman shocked to see his heated pants featured at Olympics

Feb 24, 2018, 5:43 PM | Updated: Feb 26, 2018, 10:19 pm
U.S. Olympian Lindsey Vonn was seen wearing Ravean's heated pants on the Olympic broadcast....
U.S. Olympian Lindsey Vonn was seen wearing Ravean's heated pants on the Olympic broadcast.

SNOWBIRD — Living so close to the mountains is something many people take for granted. 

“I’m skiing, I’m in the moment, nothing else matters,” said Henry Deutsch, as he jockeyed for space on the tram up the mountain. “I don’t have to worry about anything else but that moment.”

Deutsch is a lifelong businessman. Born in the Midwest, he spent most of his life trying to get here.

“I went and did apparel for The North Face, and then I came out here and worked for Ogio,” he said. “So I’ve been around the outdoor industry.”

That was 11 years ago.  Deutsch jumped at the opportunity to move to the Wasatch Front, knowing how often he’d be able to put on his skis. But as the years passed, he wanted the same freedom in his life that he felt up on the slopes.

“You’re getting tired of making money for everybody else, and there’s nothing for you at the end of the day,” he said.  

Part of his freedom means being his own boss. Deutsch makes it up the mountain several times a week, but the rest of his free time is spent thinking about the warehouse down in the valley, where his products seem to constantly be rolling down a conveyor belt.

“We make the heated jackets like I have on,” he said, proudly patting the fabric on his chest. “The inside of the jacket has carbon wiring.”  

Deutsch is a co-founder of a company called “Ravean,” which makes a variety of heated apparel. While the concept is nothing new, he said the difference is how fast the technology’s advanced.

“Battery technology is changing rapidly,” he said. “I would say two versions a year are coming out, and changing the way that batteries are constructed.”

But getting your name out there can be nearly impossible — especially in a market as crowded as winter apparel. Deutsch turned to Kickstarter for a boost, and struck gold.

“I got approached by the U.S. Ski Team and Snowboard High Performance Director,” he said.

The team worked with Deutsch on designing heated pants to take to South Korea, to help the athletes keep their muscles warm.

“By the time the athletes get ready to race and by the time they go out the gate, it can be anywhere between 15 minutes to an hour, if there’s a problem,” he said.

But companies pay millions for Olympic sponsorships, and the team was simply purchasing Ravean’s pants — meaning the company’s involvement was a secret, and the athletes had to keep their lips sealed.

“They could not talk about it at the Olympics,” Deutsch said.  “They were not allowed to talk about it.”

Deutsch resigned himself to simply being pleased with making a sale and being a small part of the team.  Then he got a message from a friend, kicking off one of the best days of his life.

“He said, ‘Did you see Lindsey Vonn?'” Deutsch said. “‘Your brand name was all over this video!'”

Deutsch watched in disbelief — there was Vonn wearing his pants, warming up in front of the world.

“Went to my wife, and I said ‘I did that!'” he said. “‘I did that! That was me, I did that!'”

While the company’s logo may have been small, people noticed.

“The website started to blow up,” Deutsch said. “Yeah, it’s pretty cool.”

While you’ll still find him up in the mountains several times a week, his business is heating up — and even this tiny bit of publicity at the Olympics is something he’ll never take for granted.

“I don’t think that we could’ve paid everyone enough money for what’s happened,” Deutsch said. “We’ve been very blessed.”

Henry Deutsch waits his turn to board the tram at Snowbird. Wearing one of his company's heated jackets, Henry Deutsch holds up the jacket's batteries. Ravean's heated jackets and gloves make their way down the conveyor belt before being packaged for shipping. Henry Deutsch explains how excited he was about seeing his company's logo at the Olympics. Henry Deutsch, left, chats with a Snowbird employee while riding the tram at the ski resort.
KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

2018 Olympics

GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 17:  Nathan Chen of the United States competes during the Men's S...
alex cabrero

SLC Olympian May Understand Pressure Felt By Simone Biles More Than Most

Most people will never know the pressure Olympic athletes are under to perform but Nathan Chen does.
1 year ago
Solitude Mountain Resort, April 8, 2013....
Sean Moody

Young skiers mark end of season with pointers from Olympic gold medalist

About 50 children got some skiing tips from Olympic gold medalist Ted Ligety at Solitude Mountain Resort
5 years ago
Thousands of people stood on both sides of Main Street to cheer and say congratulations....
Alex Cabrero

Parade of Olympians marches through Park City

Thousands of people stood on both sides of Main Street to cheer and say congratulations, especially to those home grown stars from Park City.
5 years ago
Michael Phelps, 32, opened up about his years-long battle with depression to David Axelrod on "The ...
Haley Draznin, Producer

Michael Phelps calls on US Olympic Committee to do more to help athletes struggling with depression

The most decorated Olympian of all time, swimmer Michael Phelps rewrote sports history. But his journey to 28 Olympic medals did not come without challenge. Even in the midst of Olympic perfection, the athlete grappled with mental health issues.
5 years ago
Conor Lyne was the flag bearer for Ireland in 2014....
Alex Cabrero

Retired Olympic skier encourages current Olympians to pursue their passion beyond sports

Looking back now, four years later, Conor Lyne can't believe it. Still to this day, probably the best experience I've ever had,” said Lyne. Lyne competed for Ireland as a ski racer during the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
5 years ago
...
Andrew Wittenberg

Sights and sounds of South Korea

The KSL team wraps up Olympic coverage with a look back at South Korea's culture.
5 years ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Utah businessman shocked to see his heated pants featured at Olympics