The Speed Merchant is a team of like minded guys, Brandon Holstein, Dan Begakis, and Mark Kawakami, who each bring something different to the table. The goal is to bring our sense of style and function to the motorcycle industry, while keeping our manufacturing here in California.
BRANDON HOLSTEIN: Brandon has had a love of motorcycles ever since he was a kid. He started working in the motorcycle industry over 10 years ago. Building and designing has been something he’s been doing steadily now for the last 7 years as, “Brawny Built”; his own company, that focuses on custom fabrication and custom builds. Brandon has always been drawn to purpose built bikes, whether they are dirt bikes, GP bikes, or drag bikes. There’s something about the function in a motorcycle that he finds attractive. Though not easily achieved, there is a sense of beauty in function.
Things that work and serve a purpose are what inspire Brandon, especially architecture and industrial design. His primary role is designing quality parts for The Speed Merchant. Along with R&D and parts development, Brandon also builds the custom bikes seen on our site.
DENVER DAN: Denver Dan always loved motorcycles, especially vintage/classic. The style and stories they have hidden within them have always compelled him. He likes purpose built, stripped down style of racing machines. In addition to motorcycles, history and period culture have always been a passion of his. The craftsmanship and styling across all spectrums and mediums in architecture, furniture, automobile and advertising have always fascinated him.
The driving force behind all of it is the soundtrack; independent music and it’s DIY ethos is what opened Denver Dan’s mind to all the possibilities in life and its what continues to inspire him. Through common interests and like minds, the Speed Merchant team came together.
MARK KAWAKAMI: Ever since Mark was a kid he has been attracted to art. Early on while in preschool, his teacher would let him go outside and paint in the hallways on the concrete floors with water and brushes and he has been creating art ever since.
Early influences of his were comic books, drag racing and low riders. While attending art college he found an interest in graphic design and has been at it ever since. Photography has been a big part of his career for the last 10 years and he continues to mix to the two crafts together and continues to learn and grow.
With over 20 years in the profession, Mark uses the things around him and the people he meets as inspiration in the design and marketing for The Speed Merchant.