REI to Open its First South Carolina Store in Greenville This Fall
Apr 27, 2011
REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.), a national retailer providing quality outdoor gear and clothing, today announced plans to open a new store in Greenville, S.C. this fall.
Located at the intersection of I-85 and Woodruff Road, REI Greenville will offer the top brands of outdoor gear and apparel for camping, climbing, cycling, fitness, hiking, paddling and travel products, including its own award-winning REI brand and Novara bike products. The one-story, approximately 22,000 square-foot store will house a bike shop for quick assemblies and repairs, and a seasonal gear rental department for customers looking to test new activities.
The new store will also feature a community space for REI and its local partners to hold outdoor-related classes, presentations and events. Each year, REI partners with nonprofit organizations in each of its communities that work to restore and maintain natural spaces through active volunteerism. In 2010, the company granted $3.7 million to more than 320 nonprofits through its locally driven grants program and partnered with numerous other organizations through event support, promotions and gear rentals.
“REI is excited to partner with the Greenville community to help take care of local trails, parks and waterways to ensure they are available for future generations to enjoy,” said Gail Kirkland, REI retail director for the South district. “With easy access to the Appalachians and a community of people who love outdoor activities, Greenville is a natural match for REI.”
Although it operates as a consumer cooperative, anyone may shop at REI. Members pay a one-time $20 fee and receive a share in the company’s profits through an annual member refund based on their purchases. Earlier this year, $94.3 million in annual refunds was distributed to more than 4.4 million active members based on the co-op’s 2010 sales. REI members also receive discounts on gear rentals, in addition to trips and classes offered through REI Adventures and REI Outdoor School.
The new store in Greenville will be the first REI location in South Carolina. The company’s next closest REI is currently located in Asheville, N.C. REI operates 114 retail stores nationwide and two online stores, rei.com and REI-OUTLET.com, and will open eight new stores by the end of the year.
For 14 consecutive years, REI has been recognized by FORTUNE magazine as one of “100 Best Companies to Work for in America.” Hiring for the new store will occur approximately three months prior to the opening, where REI will recruit approximately 50 employees who share a passion for the outdoors and a commitment to quality customer service. Employment information will be available at rei.jobs.
About the REI Co-op
REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of 23 million members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 188 locations in 42 states and the District of Columbia. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.com, REI Outlet or the REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. Adventurers can take the trip of a lifetime with REI’s active adventure travel company that runs more than 100 itineraries across the country. In many communities where REI has a presence, professionally trained instructors share their expertise by hosting beginner-to advanced-level classes and workshops about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to—and steward—the outdoor places that inspire us all.