If you have driven on Chandler Road recently, you have probably noticed the Georgia Southern flags flying on top of Southern Exchange Company beside Dingus Magees.  Southern Exchange is a locally owned store that serves as the “unofficial” welcome center for all things GSU.  The store is packed with Georgia Southern University T-shirts, shirts and every type of fan gear you can imagine.  They specialize in Georgia Southern University gear.

I have shopped in the store and have always been impressed with their incredible selection and affordable pricing.  What put them on my radar recently was how they rolled out the red carpet for families during SOAR.  SOAR stands for Sothern’s Orientation, Advisement and Registration. Georgia Southern hosts ten two day events that run from June 3 through July 23.  All incoming freshman students and their families are required to attend.

Southern Exchange Company collaborated with Three Tree Coffee and posted signage welcoming students and their families to Georgia Southern and thanking them for choosing Statesboro and are giving away free T-Shirts to any new students who visit the store.  They are also serving as a local concierge of sorts sharing ideas of what do to and see while the parents are visiting.  The students stay in dorms on campus while the parents are in hotels with free time to explore the Boro.

In attending the two-day event with my daughter, I was shocked at the missed opportunities for local merchants and our community during these required events. For many of these families, this is their first real introduction to our community.

Being plugged into events on campus has been a key ingredient for Southern Exchange Companies’ success.  Beginning this month, they are increasing their key relationship with the University by becoming the official Merchandiser of Georgia Southern Athletics.  You can look for a much larger presence for Southern Exchange Company at sporting events around campus and at community events.

Founded two years ago by William and Kristy Martin, they become familiar with Georgia Southern University through William’s previous career manufacturing license products for universities throughout the U.S.  The fell in love with Statesboro when their daughter Lacey relocated here to attend Georgia Southern University.  She has now graduated, but her sister Kaylyn is now attending.

“After traveling around the country visiting major universities I realized that there was an opportunity in Statesboro to enter the fan apparel and gear market.  It was something that was missing in Statesboro”, said William Martin.  “When I learned that this location at 1598 Chandler Road, adjacent to the campus was available we decided to move from the supply side of the industry and open Southern Exchange Company.  We have been thrilled with the success of the store and are very excited with this new partnership with Georgia Southern Athletics.”

When you walk in the store a larger than life mural of Erk Russell greets you and throughout the store, they honor the great traditions of Georgia Southern University with products that celebrate the past and push forward the future.  If you cannot make it in the store, they also have a great website www.southernexchangecompany.com with online shopping available for the most popular items in the store.  Stop in today and meet William and his staff and get decked out in Eagle Pride.

As seen in DeWayne Grice’s Statesboro Herald Inside Business Tuesday: https://www.statesboroherald.com/local/inside-bulloch-business-southern-exchange-company-focuses-gsu-merchandise-only/

Herschel DeWayne Grice is the founder of Grice Connect an online news and information company in Statesboro, Georgia. DeWayne has been active in the media for over three decades. He brings a unique insight...