Tread Labs, the maker of a two-part insole system, has hired Atlanta-based Uber Group to develop a wholesale program with specialty retailers in the outdoor, run specialty and tactical channels. The agreement gives Uber Group the entire U.S. as their territory and authorizes them to work directly with retail accounts or hire reps in key territories.

This arrangement reflects a new approach to sales management at a time when relationships between brands, reps and retailers are undergoing a transformation. “Tread Labs has simplified its sales programs and increased margins to address the difficult realities that many retailers face,” said Mark Paigen, CEO of Tread Labs. “The current retail landscape is completely different from when I launched Chaco Sandals. What worked then will not work now.”

The Uber Group is in full agreement. Michael Lumpkin and Steve Carvalho began their careers working retail at High Country Outfitters in Atlanta, GA. In the decades since, they built a successful rep organization, then managed sales for several large brands. They have seen the changes in specialty retail and feel that challenging times call for new solutions. “We are excited to employ a new model of sales management that empowers the rep organization to make key decisions necessary to build a brand,” says Carvalho. “Between the trust Tread Labs has given us and the generous sales programs for retailers, our job just got a lot easier.”

Photo courtesy Trend Labs