Ed Selego, the former Habitat pro and co-owner of respected skater owned shop MIA in Florida, has spoken of how the skate industry has changed tenfold since the involvement of sports brands. Speaking in a very open and honest interview, he explains how billion dollar corporations have treated independent skate shops with disrespect since they bulldozed their way into the skate scene.
“Nike was the biggest problem for us. We had many good years selling their product, but at the same time they pushed tons of product on us that didn’t sell. They used shops like ours for years to establish the Nike SB brand. Then they opened up distribution to all the corporate stores and started selling direct to consumer. Being the number one shoe brand wasn’t enough for them. They had to exploit the brand to appease Wall St. and their shareholders. They did this with no plan in place for all the skate shops that struggled over the years. They loaded everyone up with a ton of debt then dumped us. It’s really irresponsible for such a large brand to do this and harm the very industry that they have come to be a part of. There is no better example of corporate greed.”
It’s a conversation that has been brewing amongst skater owned shops for years and finally the cracks are starting appear as capitalism exploits the roots of the core skate scene.
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