Bicycles are a hot commodity among students as well as thieves. A Valley bike shop is trying to offer high quality bikes to students while aiding victims of bike theft.
Phoenix-based bicycle retailer, State Bicycle Co., or simply “State” as it is referred to by customers and employees, was founded in 2009 by three ASU alumni: Mehdi Farsi, his younger brother, Reza Farsi, and Eric Ferguson.
The mission of State is to introduce quality bikes to the fixed-gear bicycle market at a price point that is not cost-prohibitive to new riders, while expanding the local cycling community.
Since then, they have hired more than 30 employees and supplied more than 350 independent retailers world-wide.
They have secured distribution agreements in South Korea, Canada, Mexico, Australia, Norway, the United Arab Emirates and the Philippines.
State has expanded on its original line of fixed gear bikes with a diverse offering of premium fixed-gear bikes, track bikes, city bikes, cycling apparel and accessories, as well as launching an Off-Road Bicycle Division. Prices range from $300 to $999.
State has two locations in the Valley. The retail shop is located in downtown Phoenix at 2530 N. 7th St. and the headquarter office is in Tempe at 2167 E. Cedar St.
State has a retail location in London that serves the U.K., and is scheduled to open an Australian store scheduled on Oct. 1.
“State has grown over 10 times what we were in 2009,” Farsi said. “One of the most important keys to our success is customer service.”
State has a 24-hour service line, and a live-chat customer service option open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., including weekends.
One customer-centric policy at State was created to assist victims of bike theft. The company gives a $100 discount off of any new bike purchase to customers that can provide a police report from the last 90 days.
“Our customer service is what sets us apart from our competition … we work very hard to provide quality products and superior service to our customers and the community,” customer service manager Melissa Denike said.
One customer, ASU sustainability graduate student Emily Williams said she shops at State because she feels supporting a local business benefits the community.
State’s customer base includes “anyone from the advanced rider to a first time fixed gear rider looking for a bike to start on,” Denike said.
State has been hosting weekly rides called LOOPS AZ for almost four years. The 200th ride was held Tuesday.
State has also helped sponsor the ASU Cycling Club for several years.
"At the Sun Devil Criterium, a race organized by the ASU Cycling Team in conjunction with ASU Parking and Transit, sponsored by Undergraduate Student Government and the Pedal Bike Shop, State Bicycle sponsored a fixed gear category. This was the largest one day race in Arizona with 400+ racers and over 1,000 spectators," Scott Jones, president of the ASU cycling team wrote in an email.
In another five years, Farsi said he wants to continue selling quality products, growing the cycling community and providing fun activities for riders.
Farsi said the most rewarding part of his job is providing quality products he believes in.
“It trips me out when I see our bikes on the street in other states, it’s humbling, it makes me want to give them a hug,” Farsi said.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story had a misquote that may have lead the reader to believe that State Bicycle Co. was the primary organizer of the Sun Devil Crit. This version of the story has been updated with the correct information.
Reach the reporter at Preston.Scott-Hall@asu.edu or follow @sgt_preston on Twitter.
Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress.