..I'm no cheerleader for Rossignol... I switched from Rossi 9s's to Heads because they moved from a metal race plate to a horribly flexible plastic pile of crap... which I can only think was accountant driven. My assumption is based on 1) experience of Vielhaber (I come from near where they were produced and skied them as did many of my school friends) 2) a general trust in mass produced over small scale (as a famous UK car journalist once quipped, "saying a car is handmade is just another way of saying the doors will fall off").
I don't claim all 'boutique' brands are the same, or bad or worse than the big brands... just that if I'm going to spend €800 on something I prefer to place my trust in a big brand, with a big, highly paid R&D department and a brand image to maintain rather than in a man in a shed with the best machine he could afford to buy with limited funds.
So your assumption is based on one failed company that had poor quality control? Seems rather thin to me.
And your characterization of what a small ski company looks like is rather off, as well. Are there random outfits of a couple guys who are making skis in their basement? Sure there are. There's one guy near me who makes skis individually to order, he runs WhiteRoom Skis. Although his skis are off the charts awesome, and you pay for them.
But most small ski companies these days are not in a basement. Outfits like ON3P, Icelantic, G3, RMU, 4FRNT, and the like are making hundreds or thousands of skis per year. They have just as much of a brand to protect as the big guys. Even more so, since one bad pair of skis represents a much greater market share for them than Rossi or Salomon. If an outfit like Icelantic puts out 100 pair of bad skis in a year, that's a huge hit to their bottom line in warranty claims and bad reviews/publicity. If Salomon builds 1000 pairs of bad skis in a year, it doesn't make a difference to them.
The ski industry today is a lot like the American beer industry. Back in the day, you had a couple of big guys who made everything Anheuser Busch(Salomon), Miller(Rossi), Coors(K2), etc. Then there came a wave of home brewers(builders). And that segment was the wild west for a while. But now you have a handful of smaller craft brands that have emerged from that as outfits that are doing a somewhat higher volume and putting out a consistent product. Dogfish Head(ON3P), Stone(Icelantic), Oskar Blues(RMU), etc. Are there still the tiny operations that could be suspect? Yeah. But they don't fit with the more established independent brands. And some of those tiny outfits like Lawson's Finest Liquids(Whiteroom) are putting out a product that is as good as pr better than what anyone else in the market is putting out.