We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful Troy Scoma. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with Troy below.
Hi Troy, thanks for joining us today. What do you think it takes to be successful?
I see a lot of new brick and mortar businesses open and then the owners don’t spend time in their business. In my humble opinion that’s a HUGE mistake. No one cares like the owner and what you learn working day to day in
your business is invaluable. Once you get your business off the ground and put in years of sweat and hard work is
when you will eventually get your time to let your staff work for you.
As always, we appreciate you sharing your insights and we’ve got a few more questions for you, but before we get to all of that can you take a minute to introduce yourself and give our readers some of your back background and context?
My parents had retail businesses when I was growing up & they put us to work at 13/14 so I don’t think I’d be in this business if it wasn’t for them. We sell licensed apparel and gifts for Arizona State University but also mix in Spring Training every year for a few months. What sets us apart from our competition is we are small and independent. We’ve been in business for 30 years and now all of our competitors are big corporations that are run out of different states. I went to ASU, I bleed maroon & gold and know what our fan base wants or I can get things quicker than other stores. We don’t have a corporate chain of command to go thru so it happens fast! We also have amazing service and that is something that has fallen by the wayside. I’m the most proud and humbled by the legacy we’ve created and the three decades we’ve survived. My store was started just after I graduated and to make it 30 years is such a difficult thing to accomplish.
Can you tell us about a time you’ve had to pivot?
When ASU and the Arizona Cardinals shared a stadium, with our store being just a few block away we had enjoyed hosting so many BIG events! Annually we had major bowl games (Fiesta Bowl), National Championships,
Superbowls and a HUGE block party on Mill Avenue for New Year’s Eve. Mill Avenue was ranked in the top 10 best
places to celebrate New Year’s Eve. The Cardinals moved to Glendale and we lost all of that being in our backyard.
You learn to adapt without having that built in traffic and made several changes but moved on.
Let’s talk about resilience next – do you have a story you can share with us?
Bouncing back from Covid mandated business closures was a tough long road. There was virtually very limited gross sales coming in for nearly two months and I just couldn’t sit back and watch it happen. You start to get creative
with what you can do to generate business. Its either cry in your milk and watch something you’ve worked hard your
whole life spiral downward or use that energy to produce income. It was so difficult but you just had to find ways
to make it work. We had big storewide sales, we were the first to market ASU licensed facemasks and eventually
it helped us get back on our feet
- Website: https://cactussports.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cactussportsaz/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cactussportsaz/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/CactusSportsAZ
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOuE62DKrMd3cqBM5O4xXXQ
- Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/cactus-sports-tempe-2
I personally took that photo