Rapha opened its first German store on Oct. 23. The store is located in the heart of Berlin, at 5 Alte Schönhauser Strasse. It will sell the four performance lines of the British upmarket cycling apparel brand as well as Rapha's urban line, City. The store aims to attract customers and road cycling enthusiasts also through the organization of events, training sessions, cycling outing and tours.
Founded in 2004 by Simon Mottram, a branding consultant and lifelong cyclist, Rapha was sold last summer to RZC Investments, a private equity firm run by Steuart and Tom Walton – the grandsons of Walmart's founder, Sam Walton. Mottram holds a minority stake and is still in charge of the business. Rapha generated revenues of £63 million (€70.9m-$83.0m) last year, up by about 30 percent from the previous fiscal year.
The new owners plan to speed up global expansion through a business model based on selling directly to customers. Last year, Rapha opened five stores in the U.S. With the recent opening in Berlin, the brand has now reached 20 stores globally. Its declared objective is to reach 100 stores or “clubhouses” worldwide in 10 years. The brand is already present in big cities like London, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Chicago and Seoul. It is reportedly looking at a possible opening in Paris by early 2018, among others.