Assos, a pioneer of ‘technologically advanced, design-driven cycling apparel’, has announced the opening of three new ProShops across North America with ATA Cycle in Concord, MA, Signature Cycles in Greenwich, CT and West Point Cycles in Vancouver, BC.
These openings come just over a year after the first Assos ProShops in North America were created in partnership with La Bicicletta in Toronto and Fresh Bikes in Arlington, VA. The ProShop, ‘Shop in Shop’, concept was introduced by Assos in December 2012 in Madrid with Castellana Cien Bicis. There are now 23 ProShops across the globe with seven more scheduled to open by the end of 2015.
The kick-off to the 2015 Assos ProShop openings in North America was at ATA Cycle in Concord, MA on 1 May – followed up by the ribbon cutting celebration at Signature Cycles in Greenwich, CT on 7 May. More recently, the first ProShop in Western Canada was unveiled in conjunction with West Point Cycles in Vancouver, BC on 4 June.
Désirée Bergman-Maier, the Global Experience Manager and daughter to Assos founder Toni Maier, was in attendance from Assos headquarters in Switzerland for the Signature Cycles event. “The ProShop is a beautiful way for the Assos family to connect directly with our most passionate dealers across the world,” Maier said. “We thank North America for their support and are grateful for their partnership.”
Assos notes that its ProShops ‘selectively pair with the most committed independent Assos specialty retailers that have proven their excellence in selling the Assos products over multiple years.’ ProShops are carefully handpicked and go through a detailed selection process by Assos to determine the best possible fit. They are qualified based on the retailer’s love, belief and history in representing Assos.
The company also ensures that the sales staff are knowledgeable, friendly and specially trained to sell Assos product. Not only are the staff able to give detailed information on all Assos products, they should also be eager to provide the best possible service to the Assos rider.
“At ATA Cycle, we strive for excellence in the products we choose and the services we provide,” said Anil Gurcan, ASSOS ProShop Manager at ATA Cycle.
“Knowing ASSOS sets the bar when it comes to excellence in cycling clothing, it was the only logical conclusion that we partner with ASSOS ProShop.”
The Assos ProShop is based on the idea of creating a place where cycling aficionados can experience the world of Assos and receive a glimpse inside the brand that surrounds the products. Within each store, the Assos ProShop furniture (Assos Display System) is used to merchandise product.
The custom furniture is designed by Assos in-house architect, Alfonso Giron, and produced by a furniture specialist in Italy. To ensure consistency for highest layout functionality and highest furniture quality in all Assos ProShops around the world, all projects are planned centrally by Alfonso and all furniture is produced and shipped from Italy.
“The Assos ProShop was a seamless integration between our studio architecture and business ethos,” said Paul Levine, Owner of Signature Cycles. “Having a complete presentation of all the ASSOS offerings has increased our sales five fold since the conversion.”
Assos adds that the retail ‘Shop in Shop’ concept is based on creating a long-term partnership between premier specialty retailers and the Assos brand. Since the partnership is entered into selectively and based on a long-term model, Assos believes in the importance of making it a win-win partnership and thus shares the costs with the retailer.
Therefore, it is in both the retailers’ and Assos’ best interest to make the shop space as successful as possible. There are further plans to expand the Assos ProShops across North America, with Assos continuing to partner with select premier retailers.
“West Point Cycles is thrilled to extend our partnership with Assos by opening the first Assos ProShop in Western Canada,” shared Tim Woodburn, Owner of West Point Cycles. “It is always exciting and rewarding to be able to offer cyclists the best quality product and innovation in such a unique environment.”
He added, “Working with Assos through this project has been fantastic and we look forward to continuing to provide the best customer service experience along with the best cycling apparel and products in the industry.”
Hans Bergman, Sales and Marketing Director for Assos North America, commented on the recent ProShop openings, “By establishing Assos ProShops with our most dedicated dealers, we create an elevated shopping experience for our customer. These ‘Shop in Shops’ have become destination retail locations, with Assos fans driving hours to touch, see and feel this unique expression of the brand.
“It has been fantastic to see the interest from our dealers who are exploring unique solutions to connect with their discerning customers while staying ahead of their competition.”
Based in Ticino ‘Terra di Ciclismo’, Switzerland, Assos was founded in 1976 with the creation of the first ever Lycra cycling shorts. Thanks to its continued investments in R&D, the company has developed a number of innovations that have influenced the direction in which the bicycle industry has evolved – most of them are now industry standards: first Lycra shorts (1976), first sublimation on a cycling jersey (1980), first Elastic Interface cycling short insert (2001), ‘Choose your Comfort’ concept (2003), Project Starburst, ‘the fastest cycling bodysuit on earth’ (2004), S5 ‘the next cycling shorts generation’ (2008) and the S7 ‘game changer’ cycling short generation (2013).
Today, Assos proudly provides its Total Cycling Comfort ethos to more than 30 countries around the world: the integrity of the brand is safeguarded by carefully selected distributors who present Assos products to their markets with local expertise.
Assos North America based in Montreal, Canada, represents the brand’s cycling retailers in the United States and Canada.