ProOwnedCycling celebrates its 5th anniversary in 2021. Here is a look back at what helped pave the way (in addition to a great idea, cycling friendships, and drive).
Already as a child, Oscar Bjørn-Rosager had a passion for cycling. He followed the world's biggest cycling races religiously, fascinated by the terrains and distances that required an almost superhuman performance.
In short, Oscar had a dream. A dream of becoming a professional rider. As a teenager, he did everything he could to feel like one.
"I saved money to be able to buy expensive cycling clothes and gear that was similar to what the professional cyclists had," Oscar recalls.
He ended up himself winning several medals in six-day races as a U-23 rider.
However, a casual conversation with his childhood friend, Casper Pedersen from Ballerup Bicycle Club, gave Oscar a new idea.
"Casper rode for Riwal Platform, a cycling team that was about to change sponsors. I asked Casper what was going to happen to the team's clothes and equipment. He had no answer to that. I then suggested we could try and sell the discarded items.”
Founded the company in his parent’s basement
On January 13, 2016, it was official. Oscar Bjørn-Rosager and Casper Pedersen founded Second Hand Cycling Clothes – a part-time company that sold used bicycle clothing from professional cyclists.
They were both 19 years old, and Oscar still lived with his parents.
"We used their basement as a base and warehouse for the business, and the very first item we sold was a Team Cult Energy windbreaker from the 2013 season," Oscar says about the first year when the turnover was DKK 60,000.
In 2017, the turnover increased to DKK 100,000, and that was the year when Casper Hillstrøm (also quite fond of cycling), entered the company.
Casper Pedersen, who still had ambitions of a Grand Tour, was bought out.
Oscar and Casper H. agreed at the time that they had to dream big to earn big. They changed the company name to ProOwnedCycling to signal that the concept is preowned goods from professionals.
Oscar moved away from home, and the young entrepreneurs rented the basement rooms of the same building. It was serious. They worked 70 hours a week, and Oscar used his bedroom as a warehouse.
A good idea turns into an even better business
Later ProOwnedCycling got a 'real' office with more space and a formal framework to meet with customers and partners. When they sent their first item abroad in November 2017, the company was only a year and a half young and started to believe that international success was possible.
The following year, ProOwnedCycling brought in a private investor. It allowed the company to expand and sell team bikes and other cycling gear in addition to professional cycling clothing. By the way, that investor was another cycling nerd – Sune Sand. He could see the potential and had a rock-solid belief in the two young men.
Oscar and Casper thrived with this kind of confidence and reached a revenue growth of 1,100%.
ProOwnedCycling then moved to central Copenhagen. Oscar and Casper discovered great joy in the fact that they contributed to making recycling a natural thing in the sports industry – it means less pressure on the environment.
The positive development continued in 2019.From having one deal with one World Tour team in 2018, they secured four with World Tour teams in 2019, and they ended up moving venues twice to get more storage space.
They also optimized our Danish and English website and e-commerce, which proved to be a great move in the year to come.
Corona gave an unexpected boost
Although 2020 is a year that most people would like to forget, ProOwnedCycling can’t forget it because the pandemic caused most people to (a) spend more time outdoors and (b) shop more online.
This was noticeable right from the beginning of the cycling season in March to the end of October. Sales surpassed all previous years, and ProOwnedCycling ended up sending professional goods to customers in more than 75 countries.
It would not have been possible without help.
The business hired many new faces (and hands), all of which have helped make ProOwnedCycling a perfectly functioning logistics company. Something which customers also rewards ProOwnedCycling for – especially on Trustpilot.
Without them, it would not be possible to mark the company’s anniversary with the one-day race ProOwned Classic this year, which will hopefully become a regular cycling event.
What has ProOwnedCycling learned so far?
Dreams are important.
Dreams made it possible for ProOwnedCycling to make the professional feeling accessible to cycling enthusiasts around the world.
Dreams also made Casper Pedersen go his own way – he is now a professional cyclist for Team DSM.
Dreams have even allowed Oscar to become part of the professional team life – at least every time he meets with Sports Directors and cyclists, sits in the professional team cars, or lands deals with some of the biggest cycling teams in the world.