The original branch of Cycle Lab, South Africa’s largest cycling and healthy lifestyle retail chain, was officially re-opened on Tuesday (27 July). The Fourways, Johannesburg branch of the franchise, the flagship store in the chain, has been expanded in size (800 square metres) and redesigned with fresh shop fittings and modern lighting to make it more lifestyle-shopper friendly.
This is in keeping with Cycle Lab’s quest to be more attractive to cycling newcomers in a market that’s seeing continued growth, despite the economic crisis of 2009.
“At Cycle Lab we believe that cycling has the potential to become the next golf. Our competition is not other cycling retailers, but rather other recreational and participation sports. We have adjusted our strategy to suit this market and designed our stores accordingly,” Cycle Lab founder, Andrew McLean, told a large audience, comprising clients, suppliers, staff and media.
“Effort, energy and passion are the main pillars of the Cycle Lab brand and we believe this is reflected in our new-look store. We also believe firmly in added value and by using our events division and our national cycling club, which has more than 4000 members, we are able to add real value to our clients,” continued McLean.
The former professional cyclist and TV presenter also confirmed that the Sagitta Group, which owns Cycle Lab, has begun importing certain brands, including KTM bicycles, UVEX helmets and eyewear and Rubena tyres. These are retailed only at Cycle Lab stores in South Africa.
“This allows us to cut out the middleman on certain items and offer better prices to consumers. And that’s a constant commitment we’ve made to ensure Cycle Lab clients are always at an advantage,” said McLean.
Greg James, founder and Chairman of the Sagitta Group, paid tribute to McLean for his efforts in being instrumental in getting the brand to it’s current market-leading position.
“Thanks to Andrew for his vision back in 1995 when he started Cycle Lab in an effort to make cycling more accessible to the masses. The brand continues to grow from strength to strength. In the past 18 months since the Sagitta Group acquired Cycle Lab, we have made the stores more family orientated and seen the benefits in the number of people we have helped introduce to cycling.”
Cycle Lab currently has eight retail outlets – three in Cape Town, three in Durban, one in Centurion and one in Johannesburg. A new Cycle Lab store will be opening in Pietermaritzburg soon with plans to open more retail outlets nationwide over the next few years.
“We will either partner with and convert existing cycle shops into Cycle Labs or create completely new Cycle Lab stores in areas where we feel there is a need for a quality cycling and lifestyle centre,” said McLean.