Today we’d like to introduce you to Greg Grovey.
Greg, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Kicking It started as a vision of mine in the 8th grade! I have always been a huge fan of sneakers and the sneaker culture, along with everything it embodied. When I moved to Austin in 2004 to attend Huston-Tillotson University, my major focus was building a lane that would lead me to a marketing career. As luck would have it, my favorite sneaker blog, NiceKicks.com, was based in Austin and happen to be looking to fill new positions in my senior year of undergrad. I was blessed with a part-time job with them that turned full-time as soon as I graduated. While writing for the site Matt and Allison Halfhill opened a retail extension of the Nice Kicks brand.
In 2010 I was offered the General Manager position at the store and worked in that position for over six years. Throughout those years, I obtained my MBA, got married, had a child, and made many friends and business connections along the way. Wanting something more and different I left that job in 2016 to begin being a business professor and brand director at Huston- Tillotson University. During those years, my passion for entrepreneurship and sneakers didn’t subside. After nearly two years of reaching out to all of my contacts, praying extremely hard, and not giving up, I was able to open Kicking It ATX with an amazing team, including Super Bowl champion Earl Thomas.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I don’t believe any business owner can truthfully say everything has been a smooth ride. Once I actually got serious about opening a store, the process took over two years, and in those two years, I faced numerous challenges. One of the significant challenges for me was obtaining funding to get the business started. Once we got past that hurdle, finding the right location was somewhat of a challenge. Although I had an amazing relator in one of my partners Levi Chany, getting the locations to see our vision of a sneaker boutique with a bar presented quite the challenge. We found the perfect location at the Domain Northside and couldn’t be happier with it. For obvious reasons, 2020 has been a challenge for most small businesses, but with God’s grace and the support of our customers, we have been able to pivot with the changing times and remain open, operating, and growing.
Kicking It ATX – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Kicking It is located in Austin, Texas in a high-end shopping area (The Domain Northside) and is neighbors with stores such as Apple and Louis Vuitton. Kicking It opened in October of 2018 and was started by Super Bowl champion Earl Thomas and myself. With me previously being the General Manager at Nice Kicks in Austin for nearly seven years, and Earl being a Jordan Brand athlete, our partnership made perfect sense. We are the first “sneaker social” and feature a lounge area with a full-service bar. Before COVID, we created an atmosphere where people could come get the latest and greatest kicks, grab a drink, play a game on PS4, or just relax and “Kick It,” hence our name.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Up until recently, I would say my proudest moment would be actually opening a sneaker social and having Nike, Jordan, and Adidas accounts on opening day! Now I would say remaining open during a pandemic and still being able to give back to our community in various ways such as school supply drives for teachers and students and sneaker drives for the homeless.
- Sneakers $50-$250
- Clothing and accessories $10-$160
- Drinks, both Alcoholic and Nonalcoholic $2-$5
- Address: 3200 Palm Way #156
Austin Texas 78758
- Website: www.kickingitatx.com
- Phone: 512.520.5558
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @KickingItATX
- Facebook: Kicking It ATX
- Twitter: KickingItATX
- Yelp: kickingitatx.com
- Other: kickingitatx.com