Community First, Sales Second: How Konstantin Mikhaylov is Changing Action Sports Retail
Konstantin Mikhaylov founded the very first Trajectory board sports store in 2005. The store’s success quickly led to Mikhaylov opening additional Trajectory shops across Russia. The entrepreneur furthered the board sports world, as he combined fashion and art with action sports.
Trajectory was incredibly unique for the time in Russia. It focused on different types of board sports, bringing all of them together under one roof.
Mikhaylov watched the number of Trajectory stores grow, which led to his further involvement in action sports. He set up summer and winter sports festivals across Russia. Mikhaylov was also responsible for Russia’s first-ever National Wakeboard Championship, which ran for three years, and saw some of the best athletes in the sport compete.
More recently, Mikhaylov took the ideas around Trajectory and developed them further, opening a new board sports shop in the United States called Wheels and Waves. Located in Los Angeles, Wheels and Waves is a re-imagined version of Trajectory. It takes the same ideas and philosophies that the original store created to an all-new level.
The ambitious new retail project is more like a club or community hub. It will allow people to try new and different things. Mikhaylov aims for it to have different elements from surf, skate, electric bikes, foils and more.
Mikhaylov’s vision is to make the new club unique. The store will be a hub that brings together the action sports community. The space will hold a variety of events, meetups, and workshops regularly. Want to learn a new skateboard trick? Fancy meeting some local surfers? Needing to learn more about BMX? You can do it all.
“In Russia we built a successful board sport stores chain which focuses on different types of sports in one place,” Mikhaylov said. “Now, I have an ambitious goal to create a club based not only on board sports but also cycling and other sport activities to connect people socially. I envision social rides, different travel activities, a full retail space with coffee and food, chill out areas, and much more. This is just the start.”
The new community-minded retail space will be in Playa Vista. The tech hub is home to people and families looking to try new activities. It is a chance for the club to combine different sports from different worlds into one. Even very different worlds from triathlon and skateboarding can be combined into one.
For some people who participate in action sports, they struggle to find support. The philosophy of Mikhaylov’s club ensures individuals can be a part of a team. Although it may not be a “team” in the traditional sense. People with shared interests can come together to create something special.
Mikhaylov believes people organically gather in groups, regardless of the action sport or activity they are interested in. Wheels and Waves won’t just about the products it sells or the events that it organizes. The store’s environment will take visitors into a whole new world full of energy, excitement, and adrenaline. According to the entrepreneur, he aims to create a sense of involvement in people that fuels interest in a particular discipline.
From the day Mikhaylov opened his first Trajectory store in Russia, one of the key concepts has been community comes first, and sales second. This concept has helped the entrepreneur grow his brands.
The potential for the new club’s growth is incredibly high. Mikhaylov believes it can change over time by adopting new trends and focusing on emerging technologies. It can grow with its community, as the action sports world is always evolving. What worked in 2005 when Trajectory launched doesn’t necessarily work in 2023, and Mikhaylov knows that standing in place is the worst thing an entrepreneur can do. He also knows that relying on what worked for one retail store may not work for another.
One way the store plans to evolve in the future is to provide its community with a subscription service. Mikhaylov wants to understand the value of each customer and offering new services like a subscription will enable him to learn more. An app and further social network outreach are also on tap.
The future provides plenty of exciting opportunities for the club concept. The store can connect with its community in new ways and can gauge customer interest like never before. The future is bright for Mikhaylov, as he continues to ride the waves of success.