By Lou Melini — Near the end of 2015, Mike Pratt, owner of Canyon Bicycles (in Draper, South Jordan and Provo) expanded north by purchasing Millcreek Bicycles from Mike Hanseen. The following interview will detail the history of Mike Hanseen and Millcreek Bicycles. Additionally Mike Pratt will give us some insight as to what to expect from the change in ownership.
Cycling Utah: Mike (Hanseen), if I recall correctly, you started in the bike business as a teenager.
Mike Hanseen: I have been in the bicycle industry for 34 years. In 1982 I started as a stock boy at The Bicycle Fair in Sugar House that was purchased by Guthrie’s sometime after I worked there.
C.U.: I remember you being one of the top bicycle racers in the state at one time.
M.H.: My racing was far from a career, just passion, fear, angst, love and excitement for the sport. Though I have ridden bikes since age five, I started racing in 1988 with goals to compete in the 1992 Olympics.
I became a Category One in the fall of 1990 primarily racing in the West; Redlands Stage Race, Tour of The Moon stage race, Cascade Classic, Casper Stage Race to name a few.
1991 was my year with Utah's best over-all rider award, near top ten finishes in stages of Cascades and Redlands and Top 20 GC respectively.
My most notable victory was 1991 Tour of the Moon where I won the TT by 1:20, second place in the road race and a 2nd overall GC missing first by just one second, damn crits ;).
My most interesting experience racing was the 1990 Cascade Classic Criterium. The Coors Cycling team was there with Alexi Grewal whom I looked up to because of his ‘84 gold medal in LA. Nearing the end of the crit, single file and Greg Orovitz at the front drilling it to the gutter. Alexi let a gap of a wheel and a half open so I came around Alexi and took his wheel as anyone would do. Next thing I know Alexi is at my side punching me in the ribs yelling at me for his wheels back, he never got it back. After the crit I approached Alexi with cleats off. Needless to say Alexi was removed from my list of mentors.
C.U.: You then went on to open your bike shop in the mid-90’s.
M.H.: I opened my shop in 1995 in partnership with Mike Pratt and Canyon Bicycles. A few short years later we decided it would be best to separate the stores financially but keep the name the same to share in marketing. Eventually the two Canyon Bicycles needed even a further separation due to customer confusion in lines we carried and different policies, hence the birth of Millcreek Bicycles.
During my tenure I was awarded the nations number one Reynolds (wheels) seller in the US in 2008. From 2004-2008 I was the nation’s number one Seven dealer and the nation’s number one Gunnar dealer in 2007. I took a lot of pride in the final product delivered to my customers. I have established not only a great relationship with many of my customers but have made some great friends with some them as well.
C.U.: What prompted you to sell?
M.H.: My personal life took an unsuspected turn requiring my time at home more than ever. Being an owner of a shop takes a significant amount of time after the doors are locked. I am now able to close the shop and leave it behind to spend some much needed time and attention at home.
C.U.: In an interview I did with Richard Schwinn, owner of Waterford and Gunnar Bicycle Company, he said that you “are one of the country’s best bike fitters”. Will you continue providing that expertise?
M.H.: I not only will stay on as an expert fitter but will train other Canyon Bicycle employees how to fit so that every customer getting fit at Canyon Bicycles has the best possible fit on their bike at any location.
C.U.: Mike (Pratt), how does Millcreek fit into your business plan?
Mike Pratt: I had owned Canyon Bicycles in Draper for several years so I was in a position to help Mike (Hanseen) open Canyon Bicycles of Millcreek 20 years ago. After a few years we decided to run our businesses independently.
Recently Mike Hanseen decided it would be best if we take over the business side so he can focus on taking care of customers and spend more time with his family. Hanseen and I have been good friends for a long time so I was happy to help him out.
This was a good fit for us because we have had a lot of our customers express a desire to have us further north to be able to shop closer to where they live. The addition of Canyon Bicycle – Millcreek will allow us to fulfill the needs of our customers.
A lot of Utah shop owners are my friends. I’m not one to step on my friend’s toes, so buying existing shops has been the best way to go. I’m a fan of capitalism, but I also have compassion.
C.U.: Millcreek is primarily a Specialized dealer along with American-made custom bike builders Waterford, Gunnar, Parlee and Seven. Will you be adding or changing these lines?
M.P.: We want to keep the same feel in the shop but at the same time we want to expand some categories. We will broaden some price points and add some categories like hybrids and cruisers. We will keep what’s working and eliminate what isn’t. We are going to add Scott Bicycles. We intend to increase the inventory by 30%.
C.U.: Millcreek is known for great service, repairs and fittings. Will you be adding any other service?
M.P.: Mike Hanseen has been the go-to fitter in the state. That will stay the same. We plan to have high quality service with a fast turnaround. We are going to add more staff and we will pay top dollar to get the right people in place. Our staff is our biggest asset and customers are our top priority. We will be adding a bike pick-up service for people that can’t get to the shop. This will include a mobile repair.
C.U.: How would you sum up a customer experience that walks into the new Canyon Bicycles?
M.P.: Our creed is to take care of customers by helping people select the right bike to fit their needs and keeping people on their bikes with fast turnaround on repairs. Our investment in our inventory will ensure we will have what riders need.
C.U.: Mike, remind the readers of the address.
M.P.: 3969 Wasatch Blvd, in the Olympus Hills Shopping Center.