Rapha, the high-end cycling apparel brand, is relocating from Portland, Ore., to Bentonville on March 1, the cycling website Bike Portland has reported. Tom and Steuart Walton’s RZC Investments purchased the global company in 2017. The brothers are also investors in bike manufacturer Allied Cycling, which relocated from Little Rock to Rogers last year.
The moves appear to be part of the Waltons broader strategy of making Northwest Arkansas a cycling mecca. Rapha suggested as much in the following statement:
“With this [mountain bike apparel launch] in mind, we need to make sure that our office has a home that best supports this strategy. So after much careful consideration, we’ve decided to relocate… to serve these aims most effectively. The proximity to the emerging OzTrails MTB network, the incredibly fast-growing gravel landscape and the continuing emergence of Northwest Arkansas as a cradle for all kinds of cycling development will help to foster this direction and the impact that Rapha North America can have in the US and beyond.”