Are you passionate about cycling? Do you want to open a bicycle shop? Know that you are targeting a growing market. Indeed, they pedal more and more, whether for leisure or to go to work. This can be seen by the 32% increase in bicycle lane frequentation in 2020 (between May and August) compared to the previous year. 

You are probably wondering then what are the conditions for opening a bicycle shop? How to establish a business plan? Which legal status to choose? We explain everything to help you in the realization of your project.

What are the conditions for opening a bicycle shop?

Do you need to take training to open a bicycle shop? 

No training or diploma is required to open a bicycle shop. However, there are dedicated training courses, allowing you to properly establish a business plan, market research, or even learn to negotiate with suppliers. You can find training that is fully funded through the Personal Training Account. Also, if you want to specialize in bicycle repair, training can be useful or even necessary. 

Do you need a franchise for a bicycle shop?

When you start a commercial activity, you can choose to operate independently or by integrating a franchise by entering into a franchise agreement. This has advantages and disadvantages:

  • Advantages of the franchise: 
  • It makes it possible to benefit from the reputation of a brand known to the general public: the clientele is assured and in this sense, this will reduce the costs associated with communication. It will be easier for a cyclist wishing to have his bike repaired to look for a sign he knows. 
  • No need to think about an original concept , which makes it possible to undertake in complete safety. The choice of models of bicycles, parts and accessories to sell, the decoration of the store will be less worries.
  • In general, the franchisor assists you in your efforts to find premises, create a company, or even train, especially if it is a sign specializing in bicycle repair. 
  • Disadvantages of the franchise: 
  • This represents a certain cost : entrance fee, purchase of the starting stock, fittings of the room to accommodate bicycles, etc.
  • This gives less freedom in the direction you want to take your store: guidelines must be respected, which means, for example, that the authorized activities (rental, sale, repair, customization, etc.) or the choice of products to sell will be restricted.
  • You have to pay royalties to your franchisor every month.
  • If you decide to sell your store , it is likely that the franchise agreement makes the sale subject to the franchisor’s authorization. 

Why make a business plan to open a bicycle store?

Before you start the process of opening your store, you must think about developing a business plan. In other words, you must think for example about the activities to be carried out (repair, sale, rental…), the place where your future store could be located, and know if your budget is sufficient for this.

Choose where to open your bike shop

Geographic location is one of the most determining factors for your business. It must be taken into account in your market research. Indeed, it is necessary to study the catchment area of a store (that is to say the area from which the majority of its customers come), the location or not of competitors, the type of population present, etc.

Concretely, this means giving priority to shopping streets to maximize the chances of being noticed by passers-by and customers of other neighboring businesses. However, you can also target office districts if you specialize in selling worker-oriented city bikes, or tourist areas if you opt for a bicycle rental service.

Calculate the necessary budget 

The investment required can vary considerably depending on your choices: franchisee or not? city ​​center or office area? store area? Depending on the size, location of the store, the budget can vary a lot. You have to take into account the price of the business, the entrance fee (in case of a franchise), the investment in the necessary equipment, the layout of the premises, etc.

Be that as it may, note that depending on the planned activity, the investment required will not be the same. Indeed, if you are thinking of getting into the sale of bicycles, you will have to invest in the purchase of bicycles to form your stock. This will require more personal input than if you choose to simply do repairs, for example.

In addition, from the business plan stage, you have to think about the legal form that your business will take. 

Which legal structure to choose to open a bicycle shop?

Choosing the status of your company can be complicated but we are here to support you! Several options are available to you. In general, people wishing to open a store choose to set up a company and avoid sole proprietorship. Indeed, creating a company allows you to protect your personal assets since the company has its own assets and legal personality.