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Asheville Bicycle Company reopens as Giant Partner Store

Published May 8, 2018

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (BRAIN) — Asheville Bicycle Company, which was an offshoot of Ski Country Sports, has reopened after a remodel and is now Giant Partner Store, which means the retailer stocks at least 80 percent of the floor space with Giant and Liv products.

Ski Country Sports opened in 1990 and established a bike department with Giant in 1994. Since then the store has grown from a 2,000-square-foot ski/bike rental outlet to a 10,000-square-foot complete-service bike and ski retailer, 10 miles from the popular mountain bike trails in Pisgah National Forest.

In 2015 the bike department launched its own storefront and Asheville Bicycle Company was born.

Owner Craig Friedrich said the shop has developed a very close and strong relationship with Giant over the past 20 years. "With the addition of Asheville Bicycle Company, we made the investment to take the store to the next level," he said. He said the stand-alone bike store has seen a 15 to 20 percent increase in sales since the launching.

In return for maintaining the 80 percent stock level, Giant Partner Stores get assistance in store layout and design, fixturing, merchandising and retail support, including Giant Retail Academy sales education and financial analysis. They also get priority status for demo support in their region. "The Giant Retail Program is the highest level of support we offer our independent dealers," said Philip Croley, Giant's retail services executive.

Friedrich said he expects Asheville Bicycle Company to remain in double-digit growth territory over the next few years as the Asheville area continues to grow into one of the top cycling destinations in the country. "We feel the GRP partnership will give us the tools to continue to grow and expand in this key bicycle market," he said.

The store also has launched a mobile service vehicle that has already attended nine bike races and events this spring.

Other customer initiatives include a team rewards program, financing options, free one-year maintenance on all new bikes, a kid's trade-in program, free repair instruction clinics, and a demo/rental program.

From April 23-28, the shop celebrated its remodel, grand reopening, and partnership with the Giant and Liv brands with a sale, demo and weekend of activities. Highlights included a performance from mountain biking and trials riding legend Jeff Lenosky, a raffle of a 2018 Giant Escape City Disc 2 and a 2018 Liv Alight City Disc 2, bike fit and product seminars, music, a food truck with food for purchase, and free Highland Brewing beverages.

Raffle ticket proceeds were divided amongst the following nonprofits: Asheville on Bikes, Trips for Kids WNC, and Pisgah Area SORBA.

"Giant Bicycles is proud to have such a well-established and professional partner dedicated to excellent service for the local community in one of the top cycling and outdoor destinations in the country," said Croley. "We look forward to continuing this incredible relationship."



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