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P22,23 retail profile:SGBGolf_NEW_template 18/06/2009 14:51 Page 22
Clubsport Profile
Paul Clapham speaks to Simon
Hussey, MD of Clubsport about their
growth and diversification
alk to Simon Hussey, MD of Clubsports and the enthusiasm service and they
comes at you in a tidal wave. That’s enthusiasm not just for his know they can get
own business, but for the business as a whole, for sport, for everything here.”
customers – the whole thing. The company was founded in 1987 when They are big on the
he was working as a baker from 5am to 10am then running the sports promotional
shop until 5pm. At weekends he was playing rugby. See what I mean business and they
about enthusiasm – and energy! cover the market
Business was flat for the first twelve months, but then a new leisure centre – from a carful
opened and sales took off. The company now has seven shops in the of guys on a
Herefordshire/Shropshire area, providing a huge range of sports goods, golf tour,
services and fashion products. That diversity has enabled the business to grow through a
– when one sector is in the doldrums, turnover is buoyed up by another. stag or hen
The shops sell top end sports goods with a focus on rugby, cricket, tennis night to a
and running. They have also developed a thriving trade in promotional goods, whole
providing both printed and embroidered product and have custom from a rugby club.
broad spectrum – from the local brownie packs through schools to sports They are also keen on
clubs. getting into new business sectors
Clubsport was an early entrant to the Animal franchise success story. They early – promotional goods being a case in
started trading with them in 1990, and have developed six Animal shops over point. They also aim to to be at the cutting edge by
the past three years. Again, Simon says that this is a valuable extra string to updating their promotional technology. Whilst they will discount and price-
the corporate bow, expanding the fashion offering (they also sell brands such match, service is at the core of what they do. Above all they understand
as Kickers and Ben Sherman). The aim is to be Animal’s best partners and they where they are in the marketplace and if I could identify one piece of
are constantly looking for complementary brands to work with to enhance the knowledge that would benefit every business, that would be it.
business’s overall appeal to customers. Clubsport is a member of the buying group, Allied Partners who Simon
So where do Clubsport specialise? The broad plan is to be a one-stop shop characterizes as “a good bunch who roll their sleeves up, get the job done
for sports goods customers whether private individuals, clubs or schools. and pay their bills on time.” The great value that Simon ascribes to
Consumers can get everything from goalposts downwards at one store. As membership is the opportunity to share ideas. The group brings together 32
Simon says: “We’re the Spar of the sports trade – people come to us for businesses, each of them different, all of them good businesses spread around
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