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what if Performance bought your local shop?(19 posts)

what if Performance bought your local shop?DougSloan
Dec 15, 2003 7:26 AM
Anyone had the experience of Performance buying and then operating a local shop? I'd be interested to hear about it. For example, what happens to service of loyal customers, discounts, finding unusual items for you, inventory; do they have 25 year old interesting steel frames hanging on the walls? -- those sorts of things. Thanks.

Does that happen?TJeanloz
Dec 15, 2003 7:41 AM
Does Performance buy out existing shops? I would have thought they just grew organically.

My experience with Performance LBSs is that there are some good ones and some bad ones, largely driven by the quality of the manager. But I've never seen a Performance that retained an "LBS" feel - they all are corporate "big box" bike shops. It would be interesting to see what they did with a shop that was successful in-place. My guess is that they spend too much money on merchandisers and consultants to ignore their advice...
They bought a chain in San DiegoDave Hickey
Dec 15, 2003 7:49 AM
I believe it was Bikes USA. They also own Nashbar and Supergo
That's a different beast,TJeanloz
Dec 15, 2003 7:56 AM
I know they own most of the "corporate" LBS world - but buying a chain is different from buying a single LBS. I've always felt there's a huge gulf between sole-proprietership LBSs and chains. Performance buying a chain seems like a natural growth strategy. Performance buying a LBS seems like a failure waiting to happen.
Agreed.... nmDave Hickey
Dec 15, 2003 8:06 AM
I'm from San Diego....Dorf411
Dec 15, 2003 8:21 AM
Not really a different beast. They bought out Bike USA which was a rich mom and pop. I worked for La Mesa Cyclery part time when it was a 3 store business. They the bought up another 4 or so stores in the local area over the years. Then they became BIKE USA. These stores still had great small store LBS appeal and customer service. Just a couple years ago Performance purchased all of the Bike USA stores then closed at least one of them about a year later as it was only about 2 blocks from their original main store in San Diego. Just recently Performance picked up another small LBS, "Mission Cyclery" this LBS has been in San Diego for nearly 25 years. They will probably close one of the stores as it doesn't appear to have much traffic. There is good and bad with this scenario, after the initial buy out they will blow out all old inventory and just carry typical Performance stock. Also now San Diego is very limited selection of cycling junk as nearly 1/2 the shops are Performance. The good is pretty decent prices on most items. I have found a couple shop that have very good staff that treat their customers well and recognize a good returning customer.
are in-store prices same as internet? thnx nmDougSloan
Dec 15, 2003 8:26 AM
are in-store prices same as internet?Dorf411
Dec 15, 2003 8:35 AM
Pick your price!!!! If Performance internet is cheaper have them match it. If Supergo, Nashbar is cheaper have them match it. Order on the internet and have it shipped to the nearest Performance LBS and pay no shipping. These are the good aspects. Again the bad is lack of selection for some odds and ends.
net purchases shipped to local storetreebound
Dec 15, 2003 9:06 AM
"Order on the internet and have it shipped to the nearest Performance LBS and pay no shipping. "

Interesting, hadn't thought of this, may try it. I've bought a few customer returns from Nashbar in the past and saving on shipping costs would be great.
not alwaysColnagoFE
Dec 15, 2003 8:35 AM
sometimes the store is cheaper sometimes can always order off their "red phone" though and get the catalog stuff ordered and delivered to the store. You pay tax, but no shipping so it's pretty much a wash.
which shop was jeff pierce's local shop?rufus
Dec 15, 2003 9:29 AM
I remember when i visited my sister way back in 1990, i went to a bike shop in san diego that appeared to be jeff pierce's local shop. not that he owned it, but it seemed like his hangout, had a lot of his 7-11 stuff displayed there, signed and what-not. i thought that was a pretty decent shop.
They bought a chain in San Diego, and the DC area, and...MShaw
Dec 16, 2003 10:33 AM
Actually, they bought Bikes USA in the DC area and BikeUSA here in San Diego. They've also bought Supergo and Nahsbar. There goes that natural growth idea...

I've been on both sides of the counters at LBSs and PBS. I'm not going to get into my typical rant about PBS, but sufficed to say that the managers hands are tied tighter now than when I was running one. You want something we don't carry in the store? Red phone or get it somewhere else...

PBS has some "interesting" business ideas. Have y'all noticed that they never invest in prime spots for their stores? Think of all the sales they're missing 'cause they insist on using B grade storefronts.

That's my $.02 again,

yup, as we speakDougSloan
Dec 15, 2003 8:13 AM
It's happening right now. I'm torn between despair, ambivalence, and delight. That's why I'm seeking info.

As an aside, I've always been pleased with Performance internet service. They just don't have the selection I'd like, as they are sort of weak in the "racer stuff" inventory.

good for "general" itemsColnagoFE
Dec 15, 2003 8:38 AM
Forget Campy...they seem to be loyal to the big S. But they have a good selection of tires, tubes, and general accessories. Nothing too high end. I go elsewhere for that stuff. Hard to beat for accesories though. Like their Elite Bib shorts.
Say goodbye to the good old boy dealsStraightblock
Dec 15, 2003 10:03 AM
I was in there yesterday & knew it was the last chance for a sweetheart deal on a major purchase. I wish I was in the market for a new bike. The days of bringing my bike in the back and working on a spare stand are gone, too. With the other major shop down the street changing hands earlier this year, nobody will know me from Adam now. Time to start grooming new relationships, I guess.
Dec 15, 2003 8:34 AM
There is a guy at our local Performance that seems to know his stuff and is pretty helpful, but the majority of the employees there are pretty clueless and customer service is just not there. Cheap prices and a good return policy though.
I wish they wouldtreebound
Dec 15, 2003 9:01 AM
The current most local shop doesn't carry anything I want or need. They have lots of stuff, but they're 10 for 10 for not having the last 10 things I've wanted. I just go another 15-25 miles to another shop that carries the stuff I'm looking for.
It happened, sorta ...Humma Hah
Dec 15, 2003 10:21 AM
... a locally-owned LBS here evidently lost their lease to Performance. I went down to the LBS and it was a Performance. I assumed the old shop had either gone under or became a chain member. In reality, they'd just moved to an obscure location half a mile away, and Performance was getting the benefit of exploiting their old customers and better walk-in traffic.

It worked out well in a way. The old shop is usually price-competitive with Performance, and more responsive to my need for special orders. On the other hand, Performance actually seems to have the more knowledgable employees, and is at least twice the size, so they have more to sell. The old shop is full of kids who know nothing about antiques, and seem to care only about free-style BMX.

I'd trade both of 'em three times over for one of the shop MB1 works in down in DC.
It happened, sorta ...MShaw
Dec 16, 2003 10:39 AM
Yeah, the Pro Shop's a good place.

I took pride in the PBS store in FFx Circle I used to run. We had several guys that came out from DC just because we took care of them better than anyone else.

Hint! Hint! to LBS shops. Take care of your customers better than anyone else and they'll come from miles away to shop at YOUR shop.

I'm headed back to NoVa for Christmas. I'm going to have to check in on some old friends to see where the good shops still are in the area. I'll post back here when I get back.