Kingdom is changing the bike business, one option at a time
Kingdom is changing the bike business, one option at a time.
By Bradley Callow
In a world where social media companies like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter are thriving as the result of creating their own consumer driven cultures, businesses with more physical products are moving to do the same.
Startup entrepreneurs and established businesses alike are trying to create products that people can’t live without, trying to create a culture that surrounds the product––think Apple and your iPhone or Tuft & Needle and your mattress.
Kingdom is no exception. An Arizona-based company that creates apparel and totally customizable bikes––meaning you get to pick what it looks like, right down to the bar tape––Kingdom is changing the bike business. You want a bike with green tires and a purple body? You got it.
Kingdom’s Vice President of Operations, Josh Morse, says he wants the customers to see the bikes as works of art. He wants Kingdom’s customers to be able to focus on the uniqueness of their bikes, not large logos or branding.
“We allow customers to take their personality, which is also very unique, and make an equally unique bike,” says Morse.
Andre Adbru, the founder of Kingdom and a native of Portugal, started the company as an online apparel and bike retailer. Adbru first moved to Tempe to go to school at Arizona State University. He’s changed majors a few times since he’s started, but it’s no surprise he’s settled on pursuing a design degree. With a eye for clean aesthetics, he’s the driving force behind Kingdom’s look and feel.
Adbru maintained his online business for one year before transitioning to open a brick and mortar store last December. Morse says it was much more realistic to have a physical location––it makes the bike customization a lot easier.
“It was really hard to create that experience [we wanted] online,” says Morse.
If this sounds a little hipster to you, both Adbru and Morse admit that it is, especially since they sell fixie (AKA “fixed gear”) bikes, in addition to freewheel bikes.
No matter how you customize a Kingdom bike, they’re always $450. Take that low price (most customized bikes typically run in the thousands of dollars range) and add in the student discount you can get if you attend Arizona State University, and it’s an affordable customized option.
Kingdom has relied on social media and pop up stores on the ASU campus to keep their name at the forefront of bike enthusiasts’ minds. But Adbru hopes that the store will allow the brand to become more prominent, and possibly help them transition into something greater than an apparel or bike company.
“It’s not just a bike company or an apparel company,” says Adbru. “It’s a lifestyle company.”
The 21-year-old founder says he wants to focus on building communities around the urban culture theme. Adbru and Morse are trying to achieve this by having the store be an open space for students and people in the Tempe community. They say that 60 percent of Kingdom’s store will be dedicated to hangout spaces to build community.
“We’re trying to create a safe haven or place for people to come in no matter where they come from, no matter what they’re majoring in,” says Morse. “They can just come in and just be home.”
Not only do Adbru and Morse want the company and its space to become a cultural staple, but they want the bikes to stand out, too. Morse says he wants people to feel satisfied with a Kingdom bike’s beauty enough to hang them on a wall. He also envisions the bikes as becoming an integral part of people’s daily lives.
For more information on Kingdom, check out madebykingdom.com or find them on your favorite social media platform.
1015 S. Rural Rd.
Leave a Comment
You must be logged in to post a comment.