Photos Courtesy of John Cuchna
Located in sunny Solana Beach, California, Amped Boardsports is an extreme water sports company that specializes in kiteboarding, SUPing, and surfing. Owner John Cuchna opened the shop over a decade ago, and originally named the company Xdream Sportz. Cuchna, a longtime sports enthusiast, has most recently focused in on stand-up paddleboarding in his spare time with sons Trevor and Cody.
Amped carries a supply of boards, wetsuits, eyewear, and everything in between, and prides itself on establishing loyal relationships with its customers. The shop also has a rental program, which Cuchna says increases first time and beginner participation when it comes to kiteboarding, surfing, or SUPing, and gives customers the chance to try these sports using quality gear.
TransWorld Business chatted with owner John Cuchna about Amped Boardsports’ goals, equipment, and his best day at the beach.
Number of Locations?
1000 sq ft
How long has your store been around?
Been in business for 12 years
Do you have an online store?
Web site but no shopping cart, only call in orders.
Percentage of inventory dedicated to hardgoods?
Hardgoods are 90% of our business the rest is eyeware and wearables like rashguards.
What are you top three most profitable product categories?
Most profitable products are Stand up Paddle Boards, sup accessories,and eyeware.
My single best selling brand is the Starboard line up for the SUPs and Ozone or Best on the Kite side, Hayden shapes on the surfboards, lately Costa Del Mar on Sunglasses.
Who are the top three reps that service your store and what makes them special?
Steve from Just Surf just a really nice guy, Ryan from Boardworks also just a great guy, AJ from GSI also a good dude.
What store (or multiple stores) are your closest competition?
We are very close to Surf Ride and Mitch’s both very established excellent stores. We just do a different mix of products that are a lot of fun. We dont really try to compete with them.
Favortie local place to eat/grab a beer?
Lotus Cafe and also micro beers at Pizza Port
Your best surf day?
One of my favorite days down at my local beach with my sons and friends. We were kiteboarding 4 to 6 ft waves,15 to 20mph side shore wind…… big jumps, fun waves, lots of smiles. a rare special day.
Overall expectations for your business over the next 6-12 months?
I see a nice trend in the SUP market, kiteboarding is slightly flat, and surfboards are holding steady.