TORONTO, Ontario (BRAIN)—Stage-Race Distribution is the new exclusive distributor for Lake Cycling shoes in North America.
Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, Stage-Race will take over sales, marketing and distribution of the shoe brand in Canada and the U.S. following a brief absence from both markets after its previous U.S. distributor, Veltec Sports, went out of business in late summer.
Michael Yakubowicz, owner of Stage-Race Distribution, said it’s an arrangement he’s been working on since Interbike. “We were in discussions with Lake to become their Canadian distributor when Veltec dissolved.”
Stage-Race Distribution is a new venture. Yakubowicz said he launched the company at the fall trade shows and currently counts a handful of dealers across Canada and the U.S. But he said he expects to grow that dealer network over the coming weeks.
Stage-Race will ship Lake cycling shoes to U.S. dealers from a warehouse in Upstate New York, and Yakubowicz said he’s looking to open a second and third warehouse in the U.S. soon. It also has a warehouse in Toronto.
“We’re going to be setting up a U.S. sales rep force,” he said. “We’ve got a handful of reps right now, but we’re looking to grow that number in a major way.”
Yakubowicz said he plans to grow the number of brands he distributes in North America. In addition to Lake, he also distributes Shutt Velo Rapide, a merino wool cycling apparel brand handmade in the UK, plant-based bike lubricant line Orontas, and Italian road and mountain bike brand Scapin. Stage-Race will offer Scapin’s full range of bikes from aluminum and steel to carbon, both road and mountain models.
He said the transition for dealers that used to stock Lake should be seamless. Stage-Race has 2011 inventory available for immediate shipping and Yakubowicz said he’s taking orders for 2012 shoes now. The 2012 line will begin shipping to dealers in March, he said.
Aside from the distribution company, Yakubowicz also owns Blacksmith Cycle, a high-end road shop in Toronto that sells custom-built bikes from the likes of Independent Fabrication, Parlee and Alchemy as well as some bike brands he only distributes in the Canadian market like Passoni, Storck, Museeuw, Pantani and Fondriest.
Stage-Race Distribution can be reached at (416) 823-2040 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.