Experience Headphones opened on Saturday, November 30th on South Granville. This Vancouver’s first techie headphones boutique that’s geared toward the fashionista: their lines of headphones include leather-wrapped earbuds by Molami to a Rebecca Minkoff collection with FRENDS. Apparently fashion-forward headphones represent a $1.6 billion market, and continues to grow at 20% per year.
Experience Headphones Inc. was founded in July 2013 by Dean Horsfield, a former employee of Best Buy Corporate headquarters in Burnaby, Canada. He saw an opportunity to capitalize on the booming trend of fashion-forward headphones, and after unsuccessfully pitching the idea to Best Buy decided to build out the concept on his own. The company now has over 100 SKU’s from 11 different brands and is in talks with another three brands to be added early in the New Year. It also has a solid plan for expansion: 2 more stores are planned for the Vancouver market (at Metorotwn and YVR) before expanding to cities in other provinces.
The design of the store could easily remind your average consumer of an Apple store, but that’s a good thing since both brands cater toward a stylish shopper. Row upon row of listening stations line the store down both walls. The wooden floor and resting board for the headphones brings some nature into the store. The design could have went fully minialistic, clean, and white. But I feel that a touch of nature softens the look, and prevents the store from having an overly clinical atmosphere.
To be quite honest, I didn’t even know this segment of the market existed until fairly recently. But now that I know about it, I can’t help but think that the marketers behind these headphone brands, as well as Experience, did a great job with their products! I don’t think I want anything else other than stylish headphones!
“We started as an online shop but saw a gap in the market to open a storefront where customers can actually try on and experience the headphones, says CEO and Co-Founder, Dean Horsfield. He adds, “We are ushering in a new way of thinking about music marketing and consumer preferences by focusing on the experience. How you feel when you wear your headphones, how they sound when you plug them in, and how they look when you wear them on the street.”
I love that everything in the store is on display for shoppers to interact and play with. If Dean’s idea was given the green light by Best Buy execs, the headphones would likely be behind secured display cases.
What’s stopping you from experiencing stylish headphones?
Experience Headphone is located at 3057 Granville St.
Photos via Experience Headphones
Words by Miranda Sam