There's some merit to both sides of the discussion. However, I have to agree that marketing the Starboard brand at Costco wouldn't be prudent. Yet, the idea of buying a windsurfing kit at Costco or a large sporting goods retailer could open the door a bit for the sport. I think the key is offering a quality product, with a new brand name, at a very attractive price point. Potential new folks to the sport usually aren't that savvy about all the brands and the myraid of different board designs out there, so they tend to be far less picky. The idea is opening the door a bit.
The one weak point to the Costco approach is that they aren't necessarily committed to offering products on a regular basis. They often feature products for a very limited time with no intent of carrying them as a regular product over the long term, even during the appropriate seasons. In light of Costco's retail goals and strategies, it makes much more sense to concentrate on larger sporting goods retailers, especially since they have extensive inventories covering a broad spectrum of different sports and interests. That fact enables them weather the realities that windsurfing specialty retailers have fallen victim to over the years.
Last edited by steveC; 31st August 2009 at 12:39 AM.