Mark Wahlberg’s Municipal Launches First Physical Store In LA

News Room

Municipal, the athleisure brand co-founded by Mark Wahlberg, Harry Arnett, and Stephen Levinson, has marked a significant milestone with the opening of its first physical store, the Pro Shop, in West Hollywood last week. Established in 2019, Municipal was born from a desire to inspire individuals to bet on themselves and achieve greatness. The brand’s core values—character, hustle, positivity, self-belief, and creativity—drive its mission to show that no dream is out of reach with hard work and dedication.

Municipal’s clothing is described as “Sport Utility Gear designed to make you look and feel unstoppable all day long.” Its goal is to create gear that matches its customers’ diverse and active lifestyles, ensuring they look and feel their best from morning to night, in the gym, or out and about.

The Rise and Presence of Municipal

Harry Arnett, hailing from suburban Atlanta, met Mark Wahlberg on a golf course, where their friendship and shared vision for a brand that catered to active, multi-tasking lives began. Together, they identified a gap in the market for a brand that combined innovation, performance, and versatile style.

Launched in July 2020, during the height of the pandemic, Municipal started direct-to-consumer. Despite the challenging timing, the brand quickly gained traction online with its unique approach to athleisure—combining style with performance—setting it apart in the crowded market.

Municipal’s early success mirrors the trajectory of other athleisure brands that have transitioned from online to physical retail. Fabletics, co-founded by Kate Hudson, started as an online-only brand and has since expanded to nearly 100 physical stores. Calia by Carrie Underwood, initially incubated within Dick’s Sporting Goods, has also seen substantial growth and continues to gain popularity. Meanwhile, other digital-first athletics brands, like Alo Yoga, Gymshark, and Halara, are all growing and opening stores across the US.

The Pro Shop in West Hollywood

Municipal’s first Pro Shop in West Hollywood marks a significant milestone for the brand. The 1200-square-foot store is located in a vibrant area, surrounded by a mix of big and small brands, making it a perfect fit for Municipal’s ethos. The store’s design reflects the brand’s commitment to quality and innovation, with a layout encouraging customers to experience the products firsthand.

“People now have a desire to discover and experience new brands. People are hungry for newness and hungry for innovation. So I think it’s important for a brand like ours to do retail and to have a retail strategy that we implement relatively early,” stated Arnett.

The Pro Shop concept aims to provide a more specific take on active lifestyle retail, catering to various sports and activities. Arnett explains the naming of the store as a Pro Shop, emphasizing, “We liked it because it was so broad… It really is a more specific way of talking about active lifestyle and the very nature of how people like to participate in different sports.” This unique name and approach to the store allows Municipal to showcase its own products and other entrepreneurial and disruptive brands in the active categories that complement its activewear.

The West Hollywood store is designed to be a community hub, offering a space where customers can not only shop but also gather and connect. The store features a lounge and comfort station, creating an inviting visitor atmosphere. The design and layout were heavily influenced by input from the retail staff, ensuring it meets the needs and preferences of customers.

Expansion Plans

Looking ahead, Municipal has ambitious expansion plans. Arnett envisions a network of Pro Shops and Flagship stores nationwide and, eventually, worldwide. Its next flagship store, set to open in northern San Diego, will be significantly larger, spanning 6,000 square feet and featuring a coffee shop, barber shop, and lounge. This flagship will fully manifest the Municipal brand, offering a comprehensive community and retail experience.

Municipal’s expansion strategy includes targeting key large markets, especially those of some of its investors. Although no specific markets have been announced, the brand aims to create unique store experiences in each location, avoiding a one-size-fits-all approach. As Arnett noted, “All of these experiences will be anywhere from slightly to very different… We don’t really want to play a part in the gentrification of these urban environments; we want to feel like each one of these stores is a one-off.”

Municipal’s first Pro Shop in West Hollywood is just the beginning of its journey into physical retail. With a clear vision and a commitment to quality, innovation, and community, the brand is poised to challenge the athleisure market. As it continues to expand, Municipal aims to bring its unique blend of style, performance, and versatility to customers nationwide and beyond. With each new store, the brand aims to foster a sense of community and support for its customers, helping them look and feel unstoppable every day.

Read the full article here

Share this Article
Leave a comment