By Sundesh Mahes
Welcome to SPORTS DRIPS for this week. Let us take a walk into some of the best sports and lifestyle stores in South Africa. This past week, we had two major brands open new stores which are of world class standards.
Adidas opened a new concept store in Sandton, Johannesburg and Under Armour opened a store in Canal Walk, Cape Town. The fairly new French company Decathlon have opened a store in Bryanston, Johannesburg which will blow any sportsman’s mind away. We will take a close look into these unique sports stores and a few more.
As a young sports lover in the early 90s, walking into a sports store and dreaming was one of my favourite things to do in my home town of East London. We had a small sports store called Taylor Sports which is no longer around.
The sales person was so friendly to us aspiring sportsman and used to do thorough explanations on the products when the store was quiet. That salesperson, Shaun George, is now an International cricket umpire.
I got my first pair of branded sneakers, Adidas football boots and even met Sachin Tendulkar, Kapil Dev and Kiran More in that small store.
The are so many amazing iconic sports stores around the world – Walmart’s Sports department nets around $10 billion each year. We will be taking a close look as a few iconic stores in SA – Rashied Cassiem Sports, Solly M Sports and much more.
Adidas has opened the doors to its first South African flagship concept store in Johannesburg's Sandton City – equipped with interactive digital features and customised services – on 25 June.
The store, which the company says was "designed to be hyper-local, with Jozi culture and credibility woven in at every touchpoint", was decorated and furnished by artists Russell Abrahams, Lazi Mathebula, and Mia Senekal. The store is one of a few globally; Adidas started rolling the concept stores recently and they have a presence in New York, London, Paris, Beijing, and Tokyo.
Decatholon has opened a new state of the art experience sports store in Bryanston, Johannesburg.
“What makes the Sports Hub special is the opportunity for customers to spend more time with us. With over 60 sports under one roof. It's the perfect opportunity for many to discover a new sport or equip themselves for sports they practice. Apart from the sporting goods, you can join a yoga, strength and conditioning session, grab a coffee or get your sneakers cleaned. We are here to cater to all your sporting needs,” said Zama Mthethwa Events & Traffic Communications Leader at Decathlon SA.
Under Armour opened their Canal Walk Store as well.
With a brand that makes fitness accessible to all using technology-driven solutions, the latest Under Armour Brand House offers customers advice and solutions that are tailored to their unique training, running or sporting needs, including technical footwear, compression, apparel and accessories.
The Under Armour store is the first store in South Africa to feature Under Armour’s plus size mannequin range and boasts a women-only bra bar, further cementing the brands inclusive mindset and focus on female empowerment.
The store was ceremoniously opened at 9am with the signature chain-cutting ceremony by Gareth Kemp, MD of Apollo Brands.
“We are thrilled to have opened our third Brand House in the Mother City and officially our sixteenth store nationwide, offering shoppers an unparalleled shopping experience. The global pandemic continues to affect so many sectors and therefore we are extremely proud that we are able to make such a bold move considering the current economic climate. It is testament to the focused direction and innovation that is driving the brand both locally and on a global stage.” says Kemp.
From me at Sports Drips: Keep moving, stay warm and stay safe.