50 Years of MVP Athletic Supplies
MVP Athletic Supplies is celebrating 50 years of being in business, and that’s got our team reflecting on just how much has changed–and stayed the same–over the past half a century.
For the first 30 years, MVP was primarily focused on supplying schools and other institutions with athletic equipment and apparel. After that, we became more of a specialty team dealer and retailer providing everything required for a select group of sports (baseball, softball, football, and lacrosse).
From selling our products out of a basement to opening our biggest store yet, a lot has happened in the past 50 years. One thing has always stayed the same though, and that’s our commitment to treating customers and vendors like family. MVP is and always has been a family business. Many of our customers have become like honorary family members over the years, and we are so grateful to our community for their continued support over so many years.
Timeline of MVP’s History
Here’s a quick look at MVP’s timeline over the past 50 years.
MVP Athletic Supplies got started in 1973 when Harold “Hanch” Hancheroff was the head trainer at Simon Fraser University. He then started selling athletic supplies out of his basement with the help of his wife, Carol, and his in-laws Ross and Doreen Poynter.
In 1979, the MVP family moved out of the basement and we opened our first real store on Auckland Street in New Westminster. After that first real storefront, many more followed!
1989–1993: North Rd., Coquitlam
2005–2017: Walnut Grove on 88th
2007–2017: Trapp Ave., Burnaby
2006: Started sponsoring the Canada Cup International Women’s Softball Championship
2017–Present: Walnut Grove on 97th Ave.
In 2017, we opened our biggest store yet, located in Walnut Grove. The grand opening was a big celebration that included matching T-shirts and, yes, that is a giant baseball glove. This store opening meant a lot, because it reflected just how far we’d come over the years.
MVP’s Staying Power
There’s no denying that 50 years is a long time to be in business. Here’s what we think has led to MVP Athletic Supplies sticking around for half a century—and counting!
Outstanding Customer Service
There’s no doubt that the number one key to our success over the years is our exceptional team. We are lucky to have a wonderful team made up of family and friends, most of whom have been working for MVP for over 10 years. The most common comment we get from our customers is that our staff provide excellent service every time. This has led to a lot of repeat customers. We even have some customers who have been shopping with us for 30 to 40 years!
The team at MVP has always been adaptable. This means we’ve been evolving and rolling with the punches for the past 50 years. Our history of adaptability also meant that, when the pandemic hit in 2020, we were equipped to deal with it. We focused on our online store, and many people wanted to take up outdoor sports during this time so we made plenty of sales.
2022 brought another set of challenges with supply-chain shortages, but our team still managed to find products that our customers were looking for. Customers knew that, like always, they could count on us to locate and provide the equipment they needed.
Commitment to Charities and Sponsoring Events
MVP Athletic Supplies has always gotten involved with events and charities that mean a lot to us. We believe that getting involved in the community in meaningful ways is one of our responsibilities as a business.
Family and staff member, Miller (Ashley’s son), was diagnosed with Myasthenia Gravis at 13 years old. The disease is very rare in children and it is something he will need to deal with for the rest of his life. Because of this, the MVP team actively works to raise awareness of Myasthenia Gravis.
Our team has also participated in the Ride to Conquer Cancer for several years and money raised goes towards cancer research. We believe that it is important to do our part in helping to raise awareness and contribute to a cure in the ways that we are able.
We have been proudly sponsoring the Canada Cup International Women’s Softball Championship tournaments since 2006. The Canada Cup provides young women athletes with the opportunity to showcase their talent, develop their skill, gain valuable mentorship experience, and offer exposure for potential university and college scholarships.
One Big Happy Family
“At MVP, everyone is treated like family.” –Sylvia Wilcott, Office Manager
MVP is, at its core, a family business. We are proud to have so many family members working together and to see our MVP family expand over the years as children and in-laws have joined our staff over the years. The few staff members who aren’t technically family have been in our lives so long that they might as well be. This tight-knit team is what has made MVP such a successful and joyful place to work over the past 50 years, and we can’t wait to see what the next 50 years has in store for us.