Small Business Success Story
To create a Small Business success story a business owners need a team of individuals and business systems that are aligned with their vision for the business.
Here Versa Cloud ERP is in a conversation with one such Small Biz Hero Tyler Enyedi from The Gravity Cartel
Tyler Enyedi is Managing Director of The Gravity Cartel, a long time Versa Cloud ERP customer based in Vancouver, WA USA.
The Gravity Cartel is the US sales and service office for mountain bike hard goods and components from Spank Industries as well as clothing and protection for mountain bikers from iXSmtb. In this role, The Gravity Cartel offers a complete line of products from both Spank and iXS and assists customers and channel partners with warranties, sponsorship, and promotion of both brands in the US market.
Versa recently sat down with Tyler to understand The Gravity Cartel’s journey to date and where he and his team were headed in the future in his small business success story.
Versa: When and why was The Gravity Cartel started?
Tyler: The Gravity Cartel was founded in 2013 to bring products from Spank and iXS – well-known international mountain biking brands – to the US market where these brands had little to no presence at all during the time.
Versa: Tell us about the market that is served by The Gravity Cartel.
Tyler: The Gravity Cartel started by selling it’s products to avid mountain bikers through specialty brick-and-mortar shops across the USA. Over time we have expanded our reach to address the needs of a broader segment of the mountain biking community by offering our products through larger retailers like REI and Jenson USA as well as Direct to Consumer Online.
Versa: How has The Gravity Cartel evolved over it’s lifetime?
Tyler: The initial team was necessarily small. So the first years were spent by focusing on a narrow market – avid mountain bikers, and one channel – specialty Bicycle shops. It took about 8 years to establish The Gravity Cartel, Spank and iXS in that channel. The next phase was to expand sales channels to large retailers like REI and JensonUSA as well as Direct to Consumer Online.
Versa: Tell us about some challenges that had to be overcome.
Tyler: The first challenge was People. For example, the Sales team had to be expanded to grow the business. But it had to be done without adding an undue cost burden on the business. So, we had to build a ground up national sales force with commission outside sales reps. Expanding the number and kinds of sales channels also required people with experience in selling through and marketing to those channels. So, we had to recruit consultants and other part-time experts to help instead of full-time team members. Technology was another challenge we had to address. Growing the business required deeper insights into more aspects of every function of the business and much greater automation.
This was accomplished by moving our technology infrastructure from general purpose accounting software like QuickBooks and add-on products like Agiliron to the Versa Cloud ERP system which is an all-in-one solution for inventory-based businesses like ours with built-in integrations to Shopify, Amazon etc. Implementing an all-in-one system made reporting and automation possible in many areas where it was not possible before. We also focused on Process. Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) had to be defined and implemented so that the company could be scaled in an organized way. Growth had to be orderly and manageable or else it could be fatal to the
Versa: Where does The Gravity Cartel go from here?
Tyler: Our goal is to build the Gravity Cartel into a household name among everyone
interested in mountain biking in North America and across the globe. Today we are well known among mountain bike enthusiasts for high quality products that are ecofriendly and at a reasonable price. We are also known for the quality of our service. Customers are everything and we would not be where we are without their support. Our goal has always been to make every interaction with The Gravity Cartel a
positive one no matter if the customer or partner is calling to resolve a problem or to buy a product.
Versa: How will The Gravity Cartel do that?
Tyler: The next step will build on what we have today and take our products to the larger mountain biking community. That will require evolving our product line to make it easier to understand and access our products across the board from someone curious about mountain biking, to other mountain bikers who just bike occasionally, as well as avid mountain bikers whom we serve today.
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