Surf shop rides wave of success

Neil Raaschou, of Coolum Surf, shows off his award.
Neil Raaschou, of Coolum Surf, shows off his award. Contributed

COOLUM Surf made waves at the recent Australian Surf Industry Awards.

The popular store took out the Queensland Retailer of the Year Award at the annual event, which was held at Sydney's Novotel Manly Pacific late last month.

The awards celebrated the Australian surf industry's best product, brands and retailers of the past year.

Neil Raaschou, who owns Coolum Surf and four other stores, including the Sunshine Coast's Alex Surf and Dicky Beach Surf, said the award was a testament to all stores, staff and the communities.

"We're well supported by the locals which I greatly appreciate. The stores are underpinned by the local community," Mr Raaschou said.

The Mooloolaba resident was in with a good chance of winning from the beginning - of all the stores to make the final five, he had three stores in the running.

Along with Coolum Surf, Alex Surf and his Coolangatta store, Coolie Surf, were also up for the top honour.

"Having three stores in the top five is such a great recognition," he said.

"This was a category that was voted on by the industry. Having that recognition from your peers is an amazing thing.

"What differentiates us from the lifestyle stores in the shopping centres is that we stock everything to go to the beach, stay at the beach and come home from the beach."

Mr Raaschou said he was proud of all his stores.

"It's about the people who work for you, they're the ones creating the feeling in the shops," he said.

"The foundation of our businesses is to carry the best range of surfboards and accessories and to give the best possible customer service."

His online store, surfshops, which only launched last June, made it to the finals of the Online Channel Retailer of the Year Award.

"We're hoping it will be even more successful in years to come," Mr Raaschou said.

Also at the Awards, Hurley took out the Mens Brand of the Year, Rusty won Ladies Brand of the Year while Footwear of the Year went to Havaianas.

Topics:  coolum surfing

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