We recently had a chance to connect with well established retailer Sports Zone Elite based out of the DC-Maryland-Virginia area. How established you ask? They’ve been supporting the area with the flyest gear since 1985. Lucky for us they’ve also been supplying New Era product since the beginning of that era so you can rest assured that they know the fitted and snapback game quite well having seen the many different cycles of the industry. This is one interview you won’t want to miss. Pop the hood to see what’s new at Sports Zone Elite.
Who is Sports Zone Elite?
Sports Zone Elite started as The Sports Zone in 1985. Today we have grown to 30 stores, all located in the DC-Maryland-Virginia area. The Sports Zone Elite concept was introduced in the marketplace in 2006 and online since about a year now. You can find most of our products available on sportszoneelite.com.
What makes Sports Zone Elite so unique?
What makes us unique is we actually want to make a difference. In the first place as a retail company with our customer, we are training our teams to deliver the best customer service possible by offering our knowledge in the urban fashion and treat them the best we can. We are also making a difference with the way we are treating our teams, Sports Zone Elite is a real family and a lot of people working now in our stores or in our office are actually sons/daughters of previous employees who only know too much how important it is to feel free and to love the place you work at in order to give the best of yourself. That’s why we are being elite. In the end, what makes us unique is we will always do our best to #BeElite
What do you do different from other retailers?
Sports Zone Elite is organizing or sponsoring a lot of events to try to promote upcoming talents in different area (music, sports, arts), or to help the ones who need it (charity, coat drives…) or just to offer some fun sometimes (free fitness, Zumba class). What is the companies mission? Sports Zone Elite’s Mission is to become a “Destination Retailer” A place to come get the newest and latest in fashion and enjoy the complete shopping experience!!
30 stores is quite the accomplishment. Is their plans on opening more?
Of course! We are actually opening a new store at the newly renovated Springfield mall later this year and have 3 others slated to open in January 2015 How are your store layouts different then other retailers? We keep it intimate, and engaging like a boutique. What are some of the brands carried by the stores? New Era, Hudson, Puma, Nike, Adidas, Reebok, Polo, New Balance, BLVD, 9Five, etc.
When did Sports Zone Elite start carying New Era licensed headwear?
We’ve been blessed to have been carrying the New Era brand since the beginning. (1985)
How frequently are you guys updating your online New Era inventory?
We literally receive new product every week at Sports Zone Elite. So it’s good to stay up on the site or check us out in-store. Many of our releases do sell out quite rapidly.
What are some of the release that customers have enjoyed the most?
Retro 6 (Carmine’s), Retro 2, Retro 11 Low, Foamposite (Yeezy’s), Retro 6 (Champagne’s & Cigar’s)…just to name a few
We’ve seen a lot of bright color ways from your online shop. Are these Custom exclusives?
A lot of the bright color snapbacks are custom to Sports Zone Elite to hook up directly to footwear (colorways for the month or direct to a shoe). These hats are offered in a limited quantity and typically aren’t reproduced.
Do you have any New Era Product release that you can share with us?
In the month of August, we have coming in Custom hats to go along with Retro 3, Retro 14, Retro 6 for the footwear releasing during the month. As well as a few other pieces that you can see above.
What can fans of the brand look forward to from you guys in the future?
Consistent hookup of snapbacks and fitted headwear to hookup to shoes on the shelves and also a wide range of knitted hats to come just in time for the winter. We are also bringing in custom kids snapbacks to go along with kids shoes releases.
Any final words?
Thank you for an awesome interview, we hope everyone that reads this enjoys our work and are as excited as us for the new gear we have coming out via Sports Zone Elite shops.