A Public Lands store
Source: Public Lands Facebook

Who Owns Public Lands, the New Outdoor Retail Store?

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Nov. 2 2021, Published 11:57 a.m. ET

Public Lands is a new retailer of outdoor gear and products that falls under the umbrella of parent company Dick’s Sporting Goods. The first Public Lands store opened to the public on Sept. 24, 2021, in a suburb of Pittsburgh, and its second retail location is expected to open on Nov. 5 in Columbus, Ohio.

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Public Lands is led by president Todd Spaletto, who has 25 years of experience in the outdoor retail industry. Key leaders of Dick’s Sporting Goods include Ed Stack, executive chairman, and Lauren Hobart, president and CEO. The parent company of Public Lands trades on the NYSE as “DKS”.

Todd Spaletto's net worth

Todd Spaletto is president of Public Lands, the new outdoor retail store located in Cranberry, Pa. He has been employed by other major names in the outdoor market, including The North Face and Wolverine Worldwide.

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todd spaletto
Source: Public Lands Facebook

Todd Spaletto, company president, at the grand opening of the debut Public Lands store.

Spaletto worked at The North Face for 14 years before moving on to Wolverine Worldwide in 2017. His precise net worth is unknown, although Wallmine estimated it at $2.45 million in Feb. 2020 based on its known stock holdings.

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What's the Public Lands store concept?

Public Lands was founded with the goal of helping to protect public lands while selling quality outdoor products to facilitate participation in outdoor activities such as camping, climbing, fishing, and cycling. Two retail locations and a website are currently planned.

“Public Lands is an opportunity to reinvent the outdoor category,” Dick’s Sporting Good CEO Lauren Hobart said upon the grand opening of Public Lands’ first store. Outside Business Journal noted that in the first location in Pennsylvania, Public Lands features locally made or sourced products such as honey, coffee, granola, and artwork. Both locations are expansive and feature a rock-climbing wall.

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public lands climbing wall
Source: Public Lands Facebook

Indoor rock-climbing wall at the Public Lands location in Pennsylvania.

The Public Lands Fund is an organization that aims to fund conservation projects and those promoting access and equity of outdoor public lands. The Public Lands stores are committed to donating 1 percent of all proceeds to fund the preservation and improvement of such public lands.

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“We will protect public lands by advocating for and working to preserve our wild places through our give-back strategy, local partnerships with groups such as Allegheny Cleanways, and volunteer community hours working directly on outdoor restoration projects,” Spaletto said of the company.

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How is Public Lands different from Dick’s Sporting Goods?

Public Lands president Spaletto told Footwear News that the product overlap will be about 20–25 percent, since Dick’s Sporting Goods already carries some outdoor products. “Public Lands has this element of absolute technically legitimate gear that is equally unapologetically style-forward, and we think that that’s a big white space.”

Public Lands is hoping to capitalize on the boom in outdoor activity that happened during the COVID-19 pandemic and help new outdoor participants become lifelong enthusiasts.

Spaletto also said he's focused on creating a warm, welcoming experience to make outdoor activities more inclusive and accessible. He hopes that people won't give up their new outdoor habits as the economy reopens. Spaletto said that, at Public Lands, “we want to celebrate the entire experience that comes with being in the outdoors.”

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