Gart Companies, a Denver-based firm with sporting goods roots stretching back 85 years, announced Monday that its Running Specialty Group division acquired running retail company Boulder Running Co. Financial terms were not disclosed.
As a result of the deal, Boulder Running Co.’s three Colorado stores – 2775 Pearl St., Boulder, as well as locations in Littleton and Colorado Springs – will join Running Specialty Group, which was formed last year through a partnership between Gart Capital Partners and Finish Line. Gart Companies says it intends to keep the Boulder Running Co. name and plans to push the brand into the Denver area and potentially other markets outside of Colorado.
In addition to maintaining the Boulder Running Co. name, little change should come to the service model and the retailer’s commitment to community events, said Chris Brown, principal of Gart Companies.
“Hopefully the in-store experience continues to get better and better as we leverage the systems, resources and talent we have in place as a larger organization,” Brown said.
With the addition of Boulder Running Co.’s three Colorado shops, Running Specialty Group now oversees 38 specialty running stores across the country. Each small shop or chain that has been acquired has maintained its name and operating culture, Brown said.
That track record and approach gave Johnny Halberstadt, who founded Boulder Running Co. in 1996 with fellow South African runner Mark Plaatjes, confidence that he was putting his business in “great hands.”
“This isn’t going to be some no-name big-box chain; that is the last thing they would do,” Halberstadt said. “That would be like taking a jewel and treating it like a piece of glass. It’s not going to happen.”