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Opening of Bauer “Own The Moment” Retail Centers

Please note: This information is from a meeting that took place between NSGA, HDA and Bauer in 2015. In 2018, Pure Hockey purchased the two Bauer “Own The Moment” Retail Experiences and now operates them as Bauer Hockey Experience stores.


Regarding the opening of its “Own The Moment” Retail Experiences

Date: June 25, 2015

Time: 7 a.m.-9 a.m.

Place: Hilton Hotel, Rosemont, IL

Attendees: Matt Carlson (National Sporting Goods Association President & CEO), Marty Maciaszek (Hockey Dealers Association Managing Director), Rich Wuerthele (Executive Vice President of Hockey, Performance Sports Group), Matt Smith (Global Vice President of Marketing, Performance Sports Group), John Mullins (Head of Retail, Bauer’s “Own The Moment” in Burlington, Mass.)

NSGA-Bauer Q&A

Bauer has produced an “Own the Moment Program” that became effective Sept. 1, 2015 for dealers within a 20-mile driving distance of the “Own The Moment” locations. Attached is how the program will work for affected dealers as of the summer of 2015 and how it will maintain current discount structures, stock balancing procedures and incremental co-marketing funds. If this is wildly successful the 10 Own The Moment stores across the landscape will comprise 10 percent of the hockey business. Local retailers can use the facility as learning labs to educate consumers about Bauer.

Dialogue supporting local retailers is built into the business plan. Bauer views its retail partners as partners and not competition. First 3 to 4 months at each location will be focused on areas that weren’t thought of. After an initial period of time a couple of staffers will serve as resources to retailers in the immediate area.

Looking for existing box structures to move into – which Bauer did in suburban Boston and will be doing in Bloomington, Minn. Well-trafficked locations with a significant hockey playing population (used a USA Hockey member map). Looking for 20,000-25,000 square feet to put in an ice rink. Bauer said it had 3 locations in mind in the Boston area and Burlington was the best fit.

Bauer has modeled it but said it would not share this information publicly. Bauer plans to hire a full-time retail advisor with the job of delivering the “All Ships Rise With the Tide” strategy.

Bauer will not enter into enforceable agreements with retailers and dealers and will not sign that control over. Said it is critical for local retailers to build a strong relationship with the leadership of the Bauer store.

Bauer reiterated it is not doing discounts, closeouts, selling direct to teams or offering SMUs. Bauer will not offer limited edition products and will have signage that tells visitors to see their local dealers. There will be access on to a full dealer locator.

Bauer will not do team sales or sell to associations but it will have a team room where other retailers can bring in associations and sell them in the Bauer store. Bauer will hand off team sales to the local retailers.

Skates will definitely be sharpened and baked as part of the retail experience – but those services will be premium priced in the marketplace. Bauer will use the Blackstone sharpening system, which has a pretty detailed sharpening protocol that will be shared with local retailers.

No, however dealer requirements to achieve these premium products and discounts will take “Experience” store sales into account.

Bauer will have ice the size of one-fifth to one-fourth a normal sheet of ice. In Burlington, Mass., it will be 78×34. It will be a mini-rink with boards and Plexiglas and a mini-Zamboni machine.

Bauer will have to coordinate that with local dealers as the need arises. Bauer does not have the systems linkage on both sides in place yet. It would probably happen occasionally but not at a high volume. Bauer is not planning to be a warehouse for local retailers. Bauer will purposefully create relationships at the local level to swap inventory, and as a result, it is important for the area Bauer dealers to build relationships with the “Experience” store leadership, and, vice versa.

“Yes, 100 percent.” Products at the end of their life cycle (2 years) will be taken off MAP. When that happens in the marketplace the “Own The Moment” locations will follow the prices of the local retailers. “Own The Moment” will never “lead” in price reduction.

The retail centers will sell Bauer-branded apparel. Reebok owns NHL property currently – never say never, but right now no intention of selling NHL licensed apparel.

“With hockey gear and equipment there will be no exclusives. We won’t be reselling.”

“We only have athlete appearances a couple of times a year. We may have athlete appearances at our locations but we barely do it at all right now.”

Bauer’s “Own The Moment Program” provides concessions related to sales volume during the first 2 1-2 years after the Bauer retail center opens. Dealers should discuss that program directly with their Bauer representative.

“If this is not successful we won’t be flooding the market with closeouts. That’s not in our interest as a company or for our brand.” Ultimately if the program does not work we will be exiting the stores or have far fewer than the proposed 8 to 10 stores.

Bauer’s plan is to have all 10 of its locations up and running in the next three years.

Bauer currently has a 55% market share globally. What Nike is in basketball, Bauer wants to do in hockey and the impetus is to have a 70% share down the road; to create Bauer brand disciples, loyalists and zealots. Those disciples would then go back to local markets with more Bauer product in their bag. This will enable all retailers to gain from what they learn in the “Own The Moment” retail experiences and get more people excited about the brand.

Bryan McDermott, the Directory of Specialty Accounts for North America, will coordinate the program. You can contact Bryan via email at

This number includes big-box retailers such as Dick’s and Sports Authority, specialty hockey retailers and rink pro shops.

Bauer said it does not plan to sell on-line at this point. They will continually evaluate e-commerce through talking with customers and what is important to them. They currently sell some rec and pro product directly to Amazon.

NSGA Letters to Bauer

Dear NSGA member,

We hope all is well with you and your business. We want to update you on NSGA’s involvement regarding Bauer’s opening of its “Own The Moment” retail centers in the United States and Canada. Although you may not sell hockey products, it is important for you to know that your trade association is advocating for your interests.

In January, Bauer announced its plans to open retail centers, starting with suburban Boston in August and a second location in suburban Minneapolis this fall. Bauer also has plans to open retail locations in Toronto in 2016, the other “Original Six” cities of Chicago, Detroit, New York and Montreal and other key hockey markets. Bauer’s decision led to a lot of concern in the hockey retail community. This includes some of our members whose stores are or would be in close proximity to Bauer retail centers.

NSGA expressed numerous areas of concern in a letter in early June to Kevin Davis, the President and CEO of Performance Sports Group, which oversees Bauer Hockey. We received a prompt response with a call from Davis to discuss the situation. Bauer representatives, including Vice President of Hockey Rich Wuerthele, met with me and Hockey Dealers Association Managing Director Marty Maciaszek in late June in Chicago to answer many of the questions which have been raised.

We are providing this information packet to you so you are aware of what we are doing on this front. It includes a copy of our letter to Kevin Davis, a summary of the answers we received to the questions we raised and a copy of their “Own The Moment” Retail Experiences overview.

NSGA has consulted with its attorneys about possible courses of action and will continue to monitor any events as they unfold. As is always the case with legal action, the outcomes and costs are not always obvious, but there are steps that can be taken.

It is important to have reasonable expectations because the goal is not to stop Bauer from opening retail outlets. The goal is to create the environment for Bauer’s prediction to be right. We can monitor the promises Bauer has made and make sure it holds up its end of the bargain.

Ultimately we will be able to measure and report on the status of the vision: “All Ships Rise With the Tide.” It will take some time to monitor the impact of Bauer’s entry into retail because the company has opened only one outlet as of August.


Matt Carlson

President & CEO
National Sporting Goods Association

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