REI to Try Its Hand in the Big City
Parts of Manhattan may seem like a canyon surrounded by
tall mountains, but there is little about manuevering around the city that
makes you think of the need for outdoor recreation gear. The gear here tends
to be more along the lines of cell phones, laptops, shirts and ties.
the distance between Manhattan and the wild spaces of New York state and other
places, REI has decided that the time is right to to open its first store in
According to a post on the retailer’s site, REI will open in the fall
of 2011 in the historic Puck Building in SoHo. The store will be spread over
three floors and include bike services on two of them with “a quick-repair
concierge and a full-service bike shop.” It will also include the camping,
hiking, snow and water sports equipment that REI is famous for.
“REI is delighted to find such a wonderful location to serve our
thousands of Manhattan customers who have been shopping with us for years,”
said Sally Jewell, REI’s president and CEO, in a statement. “Our new
store in the Puck Building will provide a resource to serve New Yorkers, visitors
and community groups eager to enjoy the great outdoors — from bike paths and
urban greenways to wild and scenic destinations around the world.”
Discussion Questions: Is REI a good fit for Manhattan? What do you see as
the key reasons the chain is so successful in a very competitive retailing category?