A small company not only survived COVID-19's economic collapse, it's now thriving and expanding.
The Nevada based company, BlueZone Sports, attributes its success to a stronger online presence. When the coronavirus first prompted restrictions and forced businesses to temporarily shutdown, the company had to adapt.
Initially, during the shutdown, BlueZone had to let go staff members. In total, there were about 72 employees in BlueZone's Northern Nevada and California locations. When the COVID-19 shutdown first hit 12 employees remained. It acted fast and the pivot to online sales was just what it needed to grow its customer base and bring back most of its original staff members.
"Over the years we've been investing in our software system to get us to a point where we can sell our products online and broaden our reach from a regional level to a national level." said Kyle Robertson, the director of marketing for BlueZone Sports. "We wanted to give them the tools they need to live an active and healthy lifestyle outdoors, and when the pandemic hit and everyone had to shelter and place that really gave them an opportunity to look at how their lifestyle was and make some changes. So by providing all of our services online for customers nationwide people could buy those services and take that outside, maintain their social distance, and remain active and health."
The transition didn't come without challenges.
Robertson said, "Our business pre-pandemic was totally different than post-pandemic. Bringing back our original staff, and having to train them in a totally new business model was one of the most challenging things."
A stronger digital presence allowed the company to grow and carry more product. It even opened a brand new location. BlueZone opened its new store at the Reno Summit Mall in November of 2020. BlueZone says its success allows it to provide more jobs and give back to the community. It donates to nonprofit organizations and staff members say they spend time in other avenues of community outreach.
BlueZone Sports is an outdoor sporting goods retailer with locations in South Lake Tahoe, Truckee, Carson City, Roseville, and Reno! To learn more you can click here.