The bicycle giant Specialized apologized today after G&O Family Cyclery tweeted photos of a street advertising campaign pasted on the wreckage of their former Greenwood shop that says, “BETTER BIKES COME FROM BETTER BIKE SHOPS.”
G&O was severely damaged in a major gas explosion a month ago, prompting a big community effort to raise money to help the shop find a new location and keep its expert staff (including a fundraiser organized by this blog, Peddler Brewing and Familybike Seattle). G&O recently announced a new temporary location a block north on Greenwood Ave.
“I feed bad about it,” said Erick Marcheschi, Global Marketing Manager at Specialized. “It was 100 percent not intentional.”
Marcheschi said the company contracts with street advertising companies in several cities including Seattle. Specialized provides the artwork for the ads, but the contracted companies (in this case Poster Giant) finds and chooses the locations.
“They’re looking to opportunities where there are plywood surfaces they can put these wheatpastings on,” said Marcheschi. “It’s really unfortunate that this was one of those surfaces.”
He has contacted Poster Giant to have them remove the ads as soon as possible.
“We stand pretty firm behind independent bike dealers,” said Marcheschi, which is why he said he “feels like an asshole” that this happened to the former G&O shop.
G&O is not a Specialized dealer.
The plywood covered in Greenwood were covered in community-generated murals following the explosion, many of which have since been covered by these and other ads. KUOW has a great roundup of the Greenwood murals from back when they were created.
I gave a question out to Poster Giant and will update if I hear back.