Specialized has purchased its first store in Australia, with Specialized Bicycle Components Australia this month confirming it has bought Studio de Velo in Brisbane.
In an email to its retailers, Specialized announced it had purchased the Sumner store and recruited its owner, Simon Sirotti, as Specialized Australia’s retail operations manager.
While key rival Trek Bicycle Australia now owns and operates 31 stores in Australia, the Studio de Velo purchase marks a new chapter for Specialized’s operations in this country.
Its marketing & integrated marketplace manager, Emily Smith, said the company has been looking for opportunities to purchase stores in Australia and has been keeping an eye out for Specialized retailers keen to sell.
Studio de Velo was established in 2015 by husband and wife team Simon and Giles Sirotti, and has been a Specialized dealer since its inception. The Sirottis had recently begun thinking about the next phase of Simon’s career and the future of their business and the timing of the sale was right for both Studio de Velo and Specialized.
Simon and Giles had come to the conclusion that “joining the Specialized Retail Australia Team would be the best option for their store, their staff, and their customers”.
From Specialized’s perspective, the store was well located, 13km from the Brisbane CBD, and the purchase provided an opportunity to bring Simon to the team to guide the retail operations, with a view to Specialized acquiring further stores.
The email to retailers encouraged Specialized dealers who are “considering divesting, exiting, or transferring ownership” to contact Specialized Australia.
“We have options that may interest you. We want to be sure that the community you’ve worked so hard to develop has continuous and uninterrupted access to the products and services they’ve come to expect,” it says.
“If this sounds like a path you’re considering, we are eager to speak with you.”
Simon said lifestyle changes and family balance had prompted him and Giles to contemplate what the future could hold.
“Giles and I really enjoy the challenges of small business and we were always pushing forward and looking to constantly evolve,” he said.
Specialized will keep the Studio de Velo name and stated it is committed to “maintaining the community Simon and his team have built”.
“Studio de Velo employees will continue to work at the shop and Simon sees opportunities for the team to be a part of something bigger and to maximise their talents and careers in the bike industry,” the email says.
It said Simon’s role as Retail Operations Manager will be “instrumental as a soundboard to ensure we keep delivering a premium partnership to our aligned independent retailers”.