Mission Statement

Our mission is to be the leading specialty retailer buying organization in North America. SSL is committed to providing both buying opportunities and value in an ethical manner, facilitate information exchange between owners, act progressively in creating a healthier specialty retail community, and provide business – related services to our stockholders and preferred suppliers.  SSL believes in a diverse business environment and taking on the challenges of climate change and it’s threat to our industry. 

Sports Specialists Ltd. (SSL) is a collective of the best specialty retailers in the U.S.  Since our humble beginning in March, 1965 as the Ski Specialists Guild and incorporating in 1971 as SSL, we have been the leading marketing, purchasing, and merchandising group in the specialty ski, snowboard, outdoor lifestyle, and casual furniture industries. SSL is owned and directed by specialty sports retailers for specialty sports retailers.
We share a passion for the lifestyles we embrace and engage in every working day, giving SSL a unique insight into the marketplace that you just can’t get anywhere else. Our business leaders partner with industry leaders in how to sustain and grow specialty retailers business in our focus categories.

The SSL community is made up of:


Here are answers to many commonly asked questions. Please contact us if you don’t see what you’re looking for.

What is SSL?

SSL is a retailer-owned buying group representing the snow sports, outdoor lifestyle, and casual furniture industries. Our industry-leading merchandising experience will help your business grow and save money!

Who are SSL retailers?

SSL retailers are among the most respected retailers in specialty sports, whether in ski, snowboard, outdoor, lifestyle, or the casual furniture industries. SSL retailers are comprised of small businesses with owners who love what they do because of their passion for sports and retailing. For a complete list of our current retailer members, click here.

Who are SSL suppliers?

SSL suppliers are among the best companies with strongest brands in our industries. For a complete list of our preferred suppliers, click here.

Will SSL save my business money?

SSL offers significant cost saving advantages to our retailers and suppliers. As an SSL retailer with access to our suppliers’ programs and exclusive offers, SSL can and will save you money. Additionally, SSL works for you to outsource much of your workload. From invoice reconciliation to working as a high-level buyer to negotiate added savings on your behalf, SSL will absolutely save you money as a member.

When you partner with SSL as a supplier you will reap the benefits of SSL’s centralized invoicing, credit review, and security ultimately impacting your bottom line.  SSL makes sure that your cash flow is uninterrupted by paying invoices for the members on time!!

What is the Winter Sports Market?  Image result for winter sports market 2019

The Winter Sports Market (WSM) is an annual event combining SSL’s annual stockholder meeting with a buying marketplace and intelligence sharing. For almost 25 years, our retailers and suppliers come together to share industry knowledge, market information and product trends. WSM gives our preferred suppliers the opportunity to deliver their unique brand message directly with the owners and buyers of some of the best shops in the country. A special highlight of WSM is the Hot Buy, an evening when suppliers offer even deeper discounts on key products that add to your profitability.  This is THE buying event on the calendar and both SSL buyers and SSL Preferred Suppliers consider it a “must attend” event.

How do I become a member?

If you are interested in benefiting from SSL’s exclusive retailer/supplier network, please contact SSL at (720) 645-1049, or contact us online.

How do I become an SSL Supplier?

If you are interested in benefiting from SSL’s exclusive retailer/supplier network, please contact SSL at (720) 645-1049, or contact us online.


Meet the team behind SSL—whose combined wisdom, expertise and years in the industry make us who we are.

Management Team

  • Dave Nacke – President / CEO | 720-645-1045 (CO office)
  • Nancy Toscano – Controller | 585-742-1010 ext. 28 (NY office)
  • Wendy Jonon – Softgoods / Footwear Merchandise Manager | 720-645-1049 (CO office)
  • Tyler Lockard – Hardgoods / Outdoor Equipment Merchandise Manager | 720-645-1049 (CO office)

Board of Directors

Our stockholder/members elect a seven member Board of Directors to three-year rotating terms, it is the board’s responsibility is to give direction to management and lookout for the interests of all stockholder/members.


  • Chairman of the Board – Gordon Geiger: Geiger’s Ski & Sport Haus, OH
  • Vice Chairman – Sig Fossum – Sporthaus, WA
  • Secretary/Treasurer – Wayne Pilla, Ski Haus/NOTB, NH/MA


  • Alan Davis: Princeton Sports, MD
  • Parker Rice – Equipe Sport, VT
  • Thomas O’Winter – Christy Sports, CO/UT/WA/NM
  • Brad Nelson – Hi Tempo Sports, MN

Buying Committees

Buying committees consisting of key SSL owners and buyers assist management in communicating the needs of our members to our business partners (suppliers.) The needs of the stores are determined by analysis of historic buying patterns as well as written and verbal information gathering. These needs are communicated to our suppliers through face-to-face meetings and/or by written request.

Program Development & Communication

While group collaboration is encouraged in order to generate the most cost-effective programs, our retailers maintain their individuality by being able to select the programs and brands that work best for their stores.

Sustainability is a priority!

Sustainability is a priority!We believe it is everyone’s responsibility to help protect our environment. Through our technology initiatives and e-commerce platform, we are improving communications and reducing the need for paper. Please join us in those efforts to support a sustainable environment and a lasting legacy.