August 1998. Two young entrepreneurs had a passion for soccer and an innate vision for the future. Hard work, perseverance, and an inborn ability to, listen and learn. These are the fundamental traits that existed then and continue to exist today.
From the beginning, In2Sports was to be all about soccer and to create a memorable shopping experience for each and every customer. The original location was a boutique sports store gearing towards a soccer lifestyle.
The original store located in Maple Ontario was 890 sq. ft. which included 200 sq. ft. for office/stockroom, giving a retail selling area of 690 sq. ft. The initial inventory consisted of a variety of popular and trendy items. New lines were continually added which allowed the store to stay fresh and current.
After 3 years of listening to customers and seeing the exponential growth of Soccer Canada-wide. It was obvious that the store was too small and the bar had to be raised, as the In2Sports customers wanted more and more soccer products. In 2001 the adjacent space was acquired giving a total of 1400 sq. ft. Sales grew at an accelerated rate year over year. At the end of the lease; critical decisions had to be made. Following an in depth competitive analysis it was recognized that there was a void in this burgeoning market. The void was easily identifiable in that the market was lacking in a Best-In-Class Retail facility. The following objectives had to be met in all areas:
a) Store design and atmosphere
b) Product mix and display
c) Audio and visual sound and displays
d) Highly trained and knowledgeable staff
e) THE TOTAL CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE!
In March of 2007 the doors opened to the first In2Sports -The Soccer Superstore in a new retail hub in Vaughan Ontario. Over 3000 sq. ft. was dedicated to retail, offering a comprehensive and extensive soccer retail package. The customers came in droves and sales continued to exceed budget.
In 2011 with the Vaughan location surpassing expectations they were faced with their next major decision. With a highly profitable model proven over a four year period the decision was made to expand again; but this time the expansion plan was for more locations in lucrative markets.
A consulting company was entertained to evaluate the most suitable method of expansion. After many months of viewing various models; expansion by franchising was agreed to be the best method, although this would mean the company would have to create a full line infrastructure and entertain a 9000 sq. ft. office and warehouse facility along with full franchisee support personnel and systems. By 2012 all mechanisms were in place and the first franchise location was opened in Ontario. Franchise growth has been steady and consistent with only five viable markets remaining in Ontario. In2Sports is now ready and able to move nationally with the full support of all the major brands.
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