Aiming to solve the problem of kayak transport for city dwellers, architect and product designer Anton Willis and his talented team of branding and mechanical engineer strategists have successfully launched their solution of a foldable kayak that easily carries over the shoulder…making a quick jaunt in the river ridiculously easier than ever before.

The Oru Kayak

Designer and founder Anton Willis grew up in rural Mendocino County, with easy access to rivers, lakes, and the ocean. In 2008, a move into a small San Francisco apartment forced his fiberglass kayak into storage. Inspired by an article on new advances in the art and science of origami, he sketched a few ideas for a folding kayak. Sketches turned into countless paper models, and over 20 full-scale prototypes. After user-testing on dozens of bays, lakes, rivers and oceans, Oru Kayaks are ready to explore the world.

-The Oru Story

The kayak is engineered out of a single sheet of double-layered plastic featuring a watertight single seam rubber gasket. The strength comes from solid ribs and the skin is constructed of corrugated plastic. Unfolded, the kayak measures in at 12’ long, 25” wide, and 13” high. When folded up, the boat becomes it’s own carrying case at 33″ long, 29″ wide, and 10″ high, with space to hold accessories through an estimated 20,000 fold cycle. In being true with nature, the kayak is also fully recyclable, using 70% less petroleum to manufacture than a standard kayak.

The project was Kickstarted this morning, having exceeded it’s goal of $80,000 by $363,806 dollars.

via Oru Kayak


Simon is a Brooklyn-based industrial designer and Managing Editor of EVD Media. When he finds the time to design, his focus is on helping startups develop branding and design solutions to realize their product design vision. In addition to his work at Nike and various other clients, he is the main reason anything gets done at EvD Media. He once wrestled an Alaskan alligator buzzard to the ground with his bare hands… to rescue Josh.