Boulder’s Pro Closet’s crazy growth and disrupting the industry in a good way! New REI Trade in Program

By Bill Plock

It’s quite obvious from the 303 Endurance desk that The Pro’s Closet is growing and growing fast. So much so that hardly a week goes by when we aren’t posting for a new position. We are working on bringing you an exclusive interview on 303Radio with the founder, Nick Martin to discover his secret sauce to success–which will be environmentally packaged I’m sure–he is all about sustainability and re-purposing. For now he offers, “we’re so fortunate to be in such a strong growth position but that brings hurdles of its own. While it’s exciting to see all the numbers going in the right direction, and to feel the energy, enthusiasm, and dedication of the entire team, we are facing the challenge of not being able to hire fast enough. Of course, this is a good problem to have, but it also artificially limits our potential.”

Continues Nick, “we’re psyched to announce the initial rollout of our partnership with REI on their Bike BuyBack program in the Denver metro area. With REI and The Pro’s Closet, it’s quick and easy to turn your used bike into a new bike, or anything else REI offers.” said TPC founder Nick Martin. “REI is an ideal partner for us as we roll this out because we share identical values regarding the circular economy and its direct impact on sustainability.”

In the simplified trade-in process, bike owners will upload their bike’s condition into an online form for review by The Pro’s Closet. A custom email quote with the bike’s determined fair trade-in value will be sent within 24 hours. Once a trade-in value is agreed upon, the customer will receive an REI gift card in that amount when they exchange the bike at the Denver REI flagship store. REI will then ship the trade-in bikes to The Pro’s Closet for a pro tune service by a professional mechanic and resold for new adventures. With a large emphasis on recycling and repurposing gear, REI was an obvious, like-minded business for TPC to partner with.

During the pilot period of the REI Bike BuyBack program, trade-in bikes will only be accepted at the Denver REI flagship location. Quality bikes of all types, ages and brands can be submitted for value review by The Pro’s Closet, including mountain, gravel and road bikes. Tandems, recumbent bikes and e-bikes are currently not being accepted at this time.

In 2018, after adding 21 new jobs, The Pro’s Closet staff totaled in at 50 employees. During the first quarter of 2019, the company hired an additional 11 employees and is currently looking to fill 10 open positions across all departments.

The company’s focus on repurposing and finding value in pre-owned bikes and cycling gear has spawned partnerships with some of the biking industry’s biggest manufacturers, driving fast growth and the constant need to hire.

Much of the company’s fast growth is inspired by the The Pro’s Closet’s ability to partner with some of the largest cycling manufacturers in the world including Santa Cruz, Orbea, Niner, Zipp, Cannondale, and many others while developing a trade-in program made up of 5,000 bike shops via QBP, the largest bike parts distributor in America. The recently announced trade-in program with REI is another significant piece of TPC’s growth. These strategic alliances liquidate overstock and demo fleet bikes and provide a trusted platform for a healthy secondary market to support the primary cycling sales market. In 2019, fifty percent of all TPC purchased inventory came from those industry manufacturing sources.

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