Issue 42 | July 2009
ISSUE 42 | JULY 2009
FOR EVERYONE IN THE BICYCLE BUSINESS
BikeBiz CLARKS INTERVIEW
BIKE RADAR LIVE
Clarks’ MD Tony Wright discusses how the manufacturer is challenging the top-end with competitive prices...
BikeBiz’s Mystery Shopper heads out to cycling mecca Cambrdge. Were you visited and how did you rate?
The first installment of Bike Radar Live went down a treat with the trade. Find out who’s signed up for next year...
BikeBiz Awards 2009 head to Earls Court Trade awards to be held in association with Cycle Show Free event on first day By Lisa Foster THE UK cycling industry is to get its first live awards event in years, thanks to a tie-up between the BikeBiz Awards 2009 and The Cycle Show. This follows the successful introduction of the BikeBiz Awards last year, which saw all sectors of the UK cycling industry recognised and celebrated. Taking the event to the next level for 2009, the BikeBiz Awards will be held on the trade day of Cycle Show, Thursday October 8th at a dedicated drinks reception taking place once the exhibition closes. All exhibitors are invited to attend the reception to toast the winners, with a limited number of additional invitations being issued by BikeBiz. This year, the list of awards has been tweaked slightly. The awards up for grabs in 2009 include: Independent Retailer (less than ten stores) Online Retailer High Street Chain (over ten stores) Distributor – Bikes Distributor – Parts & Accessories Consumer Magazine Consumer Website
S 200 D R A W A n with
In associatio Marketing Team Manufacturer Best Cycle Show Stand
With the exception of the Best Stand accolade, which will be chosen and presented by Cycle Show organiser Upper Street Events, the BikeBiz Awards 2009 will be chosen in the same
transparent fashion as last year. The industry can lobby to be considered as a finalist for one of the ten categories by emailing Lisa.Foster@intentmedia.co.uk. Finalists per category will then be announced in print and online in September, when a panel of senior industry executives and
leading retailers will be asked to vote on the ultimate winners. “We had an incredible response to the BikeBiz Awards last year, with the market telling us that it was exactly what it had been waiting for. These awards recognise the talent within the trade,” said BikeBiz publisher Stuart Dinsey. “We launched with virtual awards last year, but it was always our intention to roll out a dedicated awards event. And we’re delighted that Cycle Show has chosen to host the awards during the prestigious Earls Court exhibition.” Andrew Brabazon, Cycle Show’s event director, added: “We’re delighted to be working together with BikeBiz on the awards. It cements the already strong relationship we have.” To find out more about winning a BikeBiz Award, email Lisa.Foster@intentmedia.co.uk. Sponsorship opportunities are also available and interested parties should contact Carly.Bailey@intentmedia.co.uk to find out more.
BIKEBIZ AWARDS 2009: COULD IT BE YOU...? Last year saw the debut of the BikeBiz Awards in the UK. The winners included:Independent Retailer Condor Cycles Online Retailer Chain Reaction Specialist Chain Halfords Distributor – Bikes Hot Wheels Distributor – Parts & Accessories Extra UK Sales Team Madison Manufacturer Hope Technology Sales Triumph DMR Product Innovation USE Exposure Lights Marketing Team Sustrans Consumer Magazine Rouleur Consumer Website Bikeradar.com Industry Achievement Bob Chicken
STRAIGHT TO YOUR MOBILE
MOBILE.BIKEBIZ.COM JULY ISSUE 42
NEWS 6-11 INDUSTRY OPINIONS 14
Halfords reveals its next target in cycle retail, new BMX ranges come to the UK and more...
EVENTS 15 OFF THE RADAR
BikeBiz talks about aggressive pricing with component firm Clarks
“To many retailers, car-free streets seem counterintuitive. In fact, better access to cyclists and pedestrians results in a boom in business.”
HALFORDS AIMS HIGH BikeBiz finds out about Halford’s premium sector ambitions following the latest set of financials from the huge retailer
MYSTERY SHOPPER This month our undercover reporter heads to cycling-centric Cambridge to see how its retailers compare...
CYCLE HONOURS BikeBiz celebrates the recognition of several key members of the bike industry, including Bob Chicken MBE, in a special feature
Look at Britain’s streets and roads and it’s hard to imagine them sans cars. But Northumberland Street – and many similar streets – show that it’s possible for a town or a city to thrive without providing through access to cars. To many retailers – except bike ones, of course – this seems counterintuitive. Bikes are for poor people; cars are expensive so motorists must be more affluent. In fact, many studies have shown the opposite is the case. A report for Toronto found that only 10 per cent of patrons at local businesses arrived by car and those arriving by foot and bicycle spend the most money each month. In the 1960s, Copenhagen – despite resistance – created the world’s longest pedestrian street. Providing better access to cyclists and pedestrians resulted in a boom in business. Recent studies from Bern, Switzerland, show that parking space devoted to bikes generates more business than an equal amount of space for cars. A study in Munster, Germany, found that cyclists buy fewer goods on each trip but spend more overall over a greater number of trips. A motorist that spends through the nose for the upkeep of a car – and parking – has less money to spend. Actor Matthew Modine, founder of Bicycle for a Day which encourages people to use bicycles more, believes cycling puts money in pockets. Bikes can be parked for free: “Imagine how wonderful life would be if you don’t have to [pay to] park to watch a musical; you have an extra $30.” So, exactly what are you doing to encourage cycling to your shop? Do you provide for bike parking? Do you lobby your local council for more car-free areas in your town or city? Get on the case, you’ll benefit from increased sales.
Carlton Reid, Executive Editor
REGULARS CHAIN REACTION
NORTHUMBERLAND STREET, in my home town of Newcastle on Tyne, is the most expensive location in the UK to rent a shop, outside of London. The streets throng with pedestrians and it’s been car-free since the 1980s. Suggest opening it to cars and there would be uproar. Yet, from 1928 to 1975, it was part of the A1, the main road from London to the north. The street was choked with motorised traffic. A footbridge had to be used to span the busy street. The bridge; the tramlines; the cars; the kerbs; all were swept away to make Northumberland Street the prime retail location it is today. Buskers and performers entertain crowds where before most of the the room was given over to the infernal combustion engine.
Singletrack editor Chippendale reveals the importance of coffee in the cycle media world
Biking brings out cyclists’ maternal instinct, while one irate retailer vents his fury...
OFF THE RECORD
This month Raleigh and Jim Walker bring new faces on board, while Procycling gets a new ed...
Tour de France goes to jail and BikeBiz lays the foundations for a cycle injury competition...
SRAM, Rockshox and Oxford all have new products on offer. BikeBiz takes a closer look
Our regular retailer columnist talks clothing, tube strikes and getting the nation onto bikes
Halfords sets sights on premium cycle sector Retailer ramps up online, accessories and high-end presence By Jonathon Harker FOLLOWING the financial yearend results for the UK’s biggest bicycle retailer, Halfords has told BikeBiz that it is planning to grab market share in the premium, accessories and online sectors. Last month the firm revealed that it had recorded a profit of £92.4 million before tax – a 2.4 per cent rise compared with last year, despite a like-for-like sales fall of 3.3 per cent. “I think it’s widely known that there are opportunities to grow our cut of the premium market and our aim is to grow profitable market share in the high-end sector,” Halfords commercial director Paul McClenaghan told BikeBiz. “I think that’s where we’ll get our growth from in the future.”
McClenaghan also revealed how Halfords’ online portals were driving business, with accessories sales and the Reserve
“We currently range between 2,000 and 2,500 lines on the cycle accessories side and we’re planning to put another
“It’s widely known that there are opportunities to grow our cut of the premium market. That’s where we’ll get our growth from in future.” Paul McClenaghan, Halfords and Collect services performing particularly well for the retailer. “What’s next for online is for us to add more variety to our accessories lines, which can also make use of the increasingly popular Reserve and Collect offering,” added McClenaghan.
2,000 on during the summer. “We want to make sure we have a very credible offer on our website for cyclists,” McClenaghan concluded. For more on Halfords’ premium ambitions, turn to our interview on page 23.
ACCORDING TO James Flower, senior consultant for Verdict Research, Halfords’ continuing success is another sign that the trade is faring well despite the recession. But the effect on independent bike dealers of the huge retailer’s withdrawal from the Cycle Republic and Bikehut brands is less clear. IBD IMPACT Flower told BikeBiz: “I don’t think this will have a major impact on independents. However, because Halfords will now not roll out numerous standalone stores, the prospects for independents going forward are improved. As ever, independents can prosper in the market, carving out a niche and building on service and specialist credentials. “That said, Halfords is growing its premium cycle business quickly which means it will bump into some specialist independents more often – though it will take time for Halfords to build real credibility in this area where service, knowledge and expertise are critical.” Flower speculated on the reasoning behind the major
rebranding: “I think the shops just didn’t trade as strongly as expected. “Perhaps the Bikehut brand didn’t have quite the credibility that Halfords thought – with some consumers maybe unaware of the Bikehut brand in-store at Halfords. Also, trading patterns differ in smaller High Street stores to those out-oftown and this may have also been a challenge for the retailer. It probably makes sense to offer an edited assortment in smaller Halfords branded stores, rather than limit a store to the sales of bikes only.” MORE SPACE FOR CYCLING? Flower cast doubt on the firm allocating more store space to cycling: “Halfords already dedicates large areas to cycling. But there is room in many of these to increase stock densities. The fact that it will not open any more standalone cycle stores means that if anything, new bike space will slow going forward. “Space growth plans and the fact that Halfords has a strong brand in cycling means that it will add share.”
Norco BMX unleashed on the UK this autumn BikeBiz gets exclusive first look at range arriving in October By Jonathon Harker NORCO is to bring a brand new BMX range to the UK this autumn via exclusive distributor Fisher Outdoor Leisure. The Canadian brand has a strong reputation across the Atlantic, according to Fisher – which picked up the Norco brand in August last year and showed it to dealers at this year’s Expo. The fresh BMX range will be available to UK dealers for the first time in October with expected price points for the models to range between £279.99 to £429.99. The Volt (pictured) is
anticipated to hit a price point of £299.99. Fisher told BikeBiz that the £299.99 to £349.99 models are expected to be particularly popular, based on initial dealer feedback, and that all bikes within that range will feature mid BBs, 25/9 micro drive gearing, integrated head tubes and have a street/park geometry. The bikes will also include chromo tubing and eye-
The Volt is part of Norco’s BMX range, heading to the UK soon
catching colour ways. Fisher Outdoor Leisure product manager Martin ‘Hawziee’ Hawyes told BikeBiz: “Our bikes are made by one of the industry’s leading BMX manufacturers and we felt by offering the Norco brand in this sector this further underlined our intention to grow the brand and the level of business available to our stockists to the strength and stature it currently receives in Canada and America.” Hawziee added that expectations are high for the Norco BMX range: “We have already established some good partnerships with the new dealer network that we have created. The feedback on desire for this range of BMXes is, to be frank, a little overwhelming! “Obviously we’re very excited to come in
This year’s Expo showcased the Norco to dealers
to the sector in the UK with such a competitive deal without having to convince dealers and consumers alike of the quality and handling of the bikes as they are already a well-known, highly desired BMX brand that has received constantly good reviews.
Ison rolls Renthal into retail STOCK of Ison’s latest brand addition, Renthal, is beginning to arrive with the Cambridge distributor. Chainrings have already landed and as BikeBiz hits doormats the firm’s ‘FatBar’ handlebar, constructed from high-strength 7050 T6 aluminium alloy, will be in stock. One product Ison’s marketing manager Matt Andrews is eagerly
anticipating is the previously unseen stem. He said of the current prototype: "It’s a patent pending two-piece, which allows more un-needed material to be machined out, cutting weight without sacrificing strength.” The yet-to-be-named model has a 31.8 clamp, 50mm reach and a ten-degree rise. It’s bestsuited to downhill, freeride and all-mountain use, but will work
for pretty much everything else. What’s more, it has a ridiculous weight of only 135 grams. The model should be available at retail in about two months with an expected retail price of £65.00 to £80.00." All of Renthal’s manufacturing takes place in Manchester and the brand is currently offering product for the 4X, MTB, downhill and BMX markets.
Renthal’s asyet-unnamed lightweight stem prototype
“Until now they could only be read about on the internet or in America and Canada,” he enthused. Interested dealers should contact their account manager at Fisher Outdoor Leisure on 01727 792604.
DB outsources BMX production to KHE German manufacturers KHE appointed by Raleigh UK to manufacture Diamondback’s top-end models By Mark Sutton RALEIGH IS to outsource production of Diamondback’s five top-end BMX bikes to German firm KHE. The UK design team will remain in charge of the aesthetics, though top-of-theline models will now come specced to a greater standard, utilising KHE and Diamondback’s own aftermarket components. Due to be debuted at the Relentless-sponsored National Action Sports Show, running from Friday July 10th to 12th, the range tops out at £599.99 for the Alt model. Described as “a showcase of what the partnership can achieve”, the Alt has a full chromoly frame and KHE’s aftermarket Astral and Astern hubs laced onto the
manufacturer’s Big O and Big V rims. Unusually for a complete BMX, the bike’s rear hub is a nine-tooth freecoaster, which alone costs around £125. Many of the top-end models come equipped with KHE’s groundbreaking Mac2 folding tyres, which claim to be the lightest available. Unsurprisingly, the Alt tips the scales at a featherweight 10.2kg, placing it in the bracket some custom builds find hard to achieve. Raleigh’s marketing manager Geoff Giddings said of the overhaul: “The main emphasis on our range this year is that instead of taking the Diamondback USA range we decided to develop our own lineup along with KHE for our top five bikes and then below that with our own factories.
The top five new Diamondback models will be manufactured by German firm KHE
“We have specced and designed all the graphics inhouse and worked with all the
manufacturers to present a really exciting and dynamic range. For the top of the range models the
emphasis has been on getting the weight of the bikes right down, now a major selling feature for BMX.” An extensive marketing schedule is in place to promote the revamped brand too, with promotional material available to dealers from early July. Those involved in Raleigh’s stockist programme will also be listed on a poster due to be inserted into Ride BMX mag later this year. Factory Media’s title will then carry advertisements promoting the brand from September going forwards. A new website is also in the works, alongside a promotional video to be created by Raleigh’s appointed in-house video producer. This title will star the newly-created Diamondback ‘Flow Team’. The Alt is at the top of the new Diamondback range, hitting a £599.99 price point
“This year we decided to develop our own range along with KHE, rather than taking the USA range.” Geoff Giddings, Raleigh
Jim Walker rolls out new promotional Fulcrum discounts WHILE stocks last, Jim Walker will be offering its customers ten per cent off its R-Torq R and RTorq RS ten-speed cranks. The super-styled carbon cranks have had retail prices (including VAT) slashed to £383.39 for the RS and £248.39 for the standard R model. Both cranksets are available in regular or compact and in 170, 172.5 and 175mm lengths. The R-Torq R crank is perfect for intense and persistent use, typical of enthusiasts of high calibre, even if they’re not necessarily athletes. Fulcrum cranksets feature the Campagnolo Ultra Torque
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"The R-Torq R crank is perfect for intense and persistent use, typical of enthusiasts of high calibre, even if they’re not necessarily athletes.”
system, which guarantees lightness, rigidity, simple assembly and easy maintenance. 34-50 or 39-53 chain ring set ups are available and the final weight comes to 751 grams.
The higher-spec model, the Racing Torq RS, has been conceived for competitive racing at the maximum level and uses Fulcrum hollow crank technology, allowing the crankset’s arms to be made with an internal cavity and therefore achieve weight loss while maintaining structural quality. For more information on the promotion, call 08707 528 777 or visit www.i-ride.co.uk.
Zyro speaks to trade ZYRO IS launching its first business partner newsletter this summer alongside its brand new consumer website – performancecycling accessories.com. The newsletter – branded Zyrogram – will be sent out quarterly and exclusively to Zyro Account Holders, including news of the latest and forthcoming branded products. The Zyrogram will also support Zyro’s ‘Orange Pages’ product guide, which will see a second edition published this month.
Bike Week is riding high More trade participation than ever, but opportunities still missed By Jonathon Harker THE BICYCLE INDUSTRY got behind last month’s nationwide Bike Week 2009, raising the profile of their businesses locally while also making the most of the commercial opportunity. Many big names from the cycle trade got involved in the national programme of events, while media coverage and attention from the press has seemingly reached a high for the cycling celebration. Manufacturer Trek partnered with a local charity during its cycling activites, Fisher Outdoor Leisure attended nearby biking events, while Halfords, Raleigh and many more firms from the trade joined in pro-cycling events. But some voices from the industry have reported that there was plenty of potential in the week-long programme of events that is yet to be fully taken advantage of. Part-time voluntary cycling promotion group Crank It Up, which took part in a range of procycling activities, told BikeBiz that many of the events taking place attracted non-cyclists – and potential customers: “We attended the Bradford event in Lister Park on Saturday June 13th and it appeared to us that non cyclists outnumbered cyclists by approximately 10 to one,” a spokesperson told BikeBiz. “The sort of ratio of people at the event in Bradford was a big potential market for retailers, and an ideal opportunity for cycle shops to get their name in front of prospective customers.
Danny MacAskill shows his skills at a Bike Week event based in George Street, Glasgow
“Hopefully next year more cycling shops will get involved and help improve on this year’s event.” One Glasgow retailer, Willy Bain of Bicyclerepair.co.uk took part in a CTC-organised event: “I took an hour out of the day to help out at ‘Parks and Ride’. We’ve had a lot of very good feedback from it already.” Chris Compton of Compton Cycles believed that coverage and awareness of the event was at its highest level yet: “We had a couple of events that we supported during Bike Week. More so than ever, it’s amazing how aware the local authority and schools are of it this year.
“For about eight hours effort from two members of staff – at local Dr Bike sessions – I’m sure the payback in commercial terms will be ten fold.” Chris Compton, Compton Cycles “The first event was a presentation at the local hospital when they launched their bike to work initiative coupled with the launch of Cyclescheme during Bike Week. We were also involved in a number of Dr Bike sessions for a couple of Government departments.”
Compton added: “We were paid to attend, though didn’t make much of a profit after expenses, but it raises the profile of our business locally – collectively the organisations we are working with employ over 5,000 people in the local area – and it demonstrates that we are
involved in our local cycling community and is an ideal way to soft sell the idea of trading their current bikes up. “For about eight hours’ effort from two members of staff I’m sure that the payback in commercial terms will be ten fold.” Compton said that Bike Week provided ample opportunities that are still being missed by the industry: “I am still amazed that the cycle trade as a whole doesn’t engage more with this commercial opportunity that is Bike Week. Sure it would be more convenient to have it in February but to make it a success it has to be in the main season.”
IBDS ‘not charging enough’ THE WORKSHOP business is booming for many independent bike dealers. But according to many, retailers are selling their services too cheaply – ultimately damaging revenues. The increasingly popular service – thought to be particularly in demand due to cyclists repairing their bikes rather than purchasing new ones – is estimated to generate as much as 20 per cent of revenue for many bike dealers. W Homer Cycles shop
manager Adam Riley told BikeBiz: “We put prices up around 15 months back after realising that we were operating on too low a margin. The increase had no effect on the footfall of customers seeking repairs and we’ve a steady flow since. “As a rough estimate, I’d say repairs, all completed by myself, bring in 20 per cent of revenue.” Swinnerton’s Cycles shop manager Craig Shuff also said he believes some IBDs aren’t charging enough: “From
experience, I’d say plenty of cycle shops do still undercharge, although just two years back, so did Swinnerton’s. In fact, our prices were 50 per cent lower across the board, yet the increase has done nothing to dent custom. Quite the opposite, as our workshop is very busy.” Steve Williams, co-owner of Highland Cycles, said: “I think the industry still tends to sell itself to customers a bit cheap. Then again, this all depends on the affluence of your patch.”
BIKEBIZ JULY 9
CYCLE BikeRadar Live is set to be ‘the UK’s
SHORTS only bike festival’, says Future
It’s just the beginning for BRL, according to Future Madison signs up for 2010 386 million trips made on National Cycle Network in the past year Sustainable transport charity Sustrans has announced that for the first time in its 14 year history, the National Cycle Network has recorded more than one million journeys everyday. Half were made by bike.
Cycle Surgery to open new outlet this summer Cycle Surgery is moving out of Selfridges on Sunday July 5th and relocating to Great Portland Street, London. Head of marketing Kevin Young explains: “After seven years of successful trading from our concession in Selfridges, our new Great Portland Street store gives us the perfect opportunity to grow our business in this busy part of London.”
Re-Cycle ships donates bikes tools and spare parts to Africa Bike charity Re-Cycle, which makes use of the millions of bikes thrown away in England by sending them to African people who are forced to walk for hours by lack of transport, is celebrating its tenth anniversary. The charity has also recently sent 30,000 bikes to Zambia. For more info check out http:/www.re-cycle.org
By Jonathon Harker HOT ON the heels of the announcement that Madison will be attending next year’s BikeRadar Live, Future has told BikeBiz that it has high hopes that other big names are on track to sign up to next year’s event – which is set to be bigger and better. The debut event, which took place in May at Donington Park, saw 8,472 attendees visit the cycling festival, and Future boasted that BRL will be the UK’s premier cycling event: “We intend to develop BikeRadar Live as a calendar event – the UK’s only bike festival,” Future publishing director Peter Stothard told BikeBiz. “Our exhibitors have a fantastic opportunity to promote their product launches to an audience of passionate cyclists.” Madison became the first confirmed partner for the second BRL. While the Milton Keynesbased distributor didn’t attend the 2009 event, Madison marketing director Will Fripp visited the show. He said: “I was really impressed with BikeRadar Live; a great event with a fantastic atmosphere, one I haven’t experienced at a cycle event for some considerable years,” Fripp enthused. “The fantastic mix of cyclists – from roadies and families, through to hardcore off-road riders was brilliant, and made the show appeal to enthusiasts and the trade itself.
“Traders sold bikes as a direct result of show visits. All-in-all, our partners were very happy with the show” “Madison will be exhibiting at BikeRadar Live next year, with all of our brands represented.” Madison’s move is set to be the first of many industry names signing up to the event, according to Future: “The success of the first BRL is fresh in many people’s minds and we’re now speaking with many of the industry’s biggest names to make 2010 even bigger. The inaugural event was untested, so naturally some areas of the industry wanted to see how successful
FUTURE is hoping to smash the attendance seen for the first event. Stothard told BikeBiz: “The resoundingly positive feedback has created a real buzz amongst those who missed it in 2009. Getting traders and enthusiasts to visualise BikeRadar Live before they saw it with their own eyes was our biggest challenge.” “We were incredibly pleased with this year’s event, and already have a dedicated team working on making 2010 even bigger and better,” Stothard added.
IBD opens first Giant exclusive concept store
Fli lands eyewear brand Electric Visual Sports brand Electric Visual has signed a deal for Fli Distribution to supply its sunglasses, goggles and clothing ranges. Interested dealers should head to the Fli Distribution homepage or contact brand manager Darren Bland on 01457 861 849.
BikeRadar Live was. Madison confirmed their intention of working with us at the event, so we now have high hopes to secure other major names.” Stothard confirmed that growth of the trade side of the festival was key to the event organisers: “Our first-year trade partners were happy with the results. Traders sold bikes as a direct result of visits to their stand at the event.” For more on the festival turn to page 30 for our BRL report.
Future concept store partners are now in negotiations with Giant
AS REVEALED on BikeBiz.com, Giant has launched its first concept store in Liverpool at the start of last month. The first UK-based exclusively Giant store will be run by an independent bicycle dealer in what is described as an up and coming quarter of the city. The store – named Bike Beat – is
being run as a co-operative and surplus revenues will be invested back into the shop. Giant has gone on to confirm that it is planning to roll the concept out to other locations across the UK and potential future partners are already in discussion for more independent stores to use the Giant concept.
For breaking news visit:
www.bikebiz.com 10 BIKEBIZ JULY
Cyclodelic to launch into cycling boutique
Cyclodelic’s deal with High Street fashion store Topshop has played its part in fostering the womenin-cycling zeitgeist
Female cycle clothing firm reaps rewards from Topshop deal By Jonathon Harker CYCLODELIC’S launch into Topshop’s flagship store on Oxford Street has seen interest in the brand rocket, with a number of global deals in the works. The unprecendented move, as reported by BikeBiz in March, saw Cyclodelic’s range of women’s cycling clothing and accessories launched into one of the world’s largest fashion stores in April. The Cyclodelic brand was created by Sarah Buck and Amy Fleuriot who told BikeBiz that the reaction to the range – and the high profile provided by the Topshop deal – has sparked plenty of interest in the brand: “It has been extremely positive. We've had press and interested retailers contact us from all over the world and have
secured deals with Chain Reaction Cycles, Tokyo Fixed Gear and are in talks with distributors for Ireland, Australia and Japan.” Fleuriot explained that the Topshop deal will soon be over:
“We’re moving the range to a wellknown London cycling boutique.” Amy Fleuriot, Cyclodelic “There were discussions about expanding the range but the products that we want to push wouldn't be suitable for the market and price in Topshop.” But despite the end of that deal Cyclodelic revealed that a
move into a top cycling boutique is forthcoming: “We are leaving Topshop to focus on distributing the range globally and to give a more personalised service to customers. We’ll be moving the Topshop range into a well-known central London cycling boutique, launching our site and looking for more retailers to take it on.” It’s a great time for women in cycling, according to Cleuriot: “We've got fantastic role models in cycling and fashion, from Shanaze Reade and Nicole Cooke, to Agnes Deane and Lily Allen.” Fleuriot concluded: “We’re focusing on getting our range perfected but the Topshop deal has been great for us and the image of cycling. We’d definitely consider partnering with High Street stores in the future.”
BIKEBIZ JULY 11
Lifeblood Singletrack editor Chipps Chippendale reckons that a good coffee is worth more than better margins… AS A TEENAGE bike shop hangeron, it’s the sign that you’ve ‘arrived’ when the boss asks if you’d like to put the kettle on “…and make one for yourself”. Before that moment, you were just someone who popped in every Saturday to look at bikes, maybe paw some shiny components that you could never afford and get volunteered for cutting up some cardboard. After that moment of brewing up, you were officially ‘in the gang’. You had been shown where the teabags live, you had been told about Brian the Mechanic’s two and a half sugars and you knew that the boss always had the Rockshox mug. It’s the same for customers. You can come in every week and buy something, but it’s when the manager offers you a coffee that you know that you’re not only recognised, but valued. Teabags cost pennies, but the act of making a cuppa blurs the line between customer and retailer. It’s a perk and a privilege to be offered it. There’s no going back either – once you’ve been offered a coffee or tea, protocol
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demands that you are forevermore offered a beverage, so it’s not an offer to give lightly. Every now and again, you’ll find a shop or supplier where there’s a coffee fanatic (they seem more common than tea fanatics for some reason, probably because it’s hard to make terrible tea, but so easy to ruin coffee). The presence of a coffee fanatic is easy to spot as there will be a shiny, steaming machine in a corner, next to an equally shiny grinder. Occasionally it’ll be a dripmachine, but the true coffee nut will have found a way to justify a proper espresso machine. In the same way that a good mechanic will hear imperceptible squeaks and rattles from a drivetrain and instinctively reach to fix them without thinking, so the coffeehound will work to keep their machine in tip-top condition. The grind of the beans will be adjusted one click at a time so that the coffee flows from the spouts of the filterhandle in a perfect, creamy brown drizzle. The steam wand (always shiny and cleaned
between frothings) will dispense dry, clean steam to freshly poured, cold milk. Often there’s no need for a thermometer as the temperature will be judged by a brief grasp of the hand and
“If you want the best coffee, you need only ask your nearest travelling bike rep. They’ll divert miles out of their way for a good one.” Chipps Chippendale the pitch of the steam roar through the milk. The resultant coffee will be served (in the correct cups) with apparent nonchalance, but quiet pride in a coffee well made. Your barista won’t expect praise, but will be listening out for the ‘Mmm…’ of the first sip. That is reward enough.
I know that I’m not alone in my enthusiasm for coffee. I’ve been to many places where good coffee is served and if you want the best run-down, you need only ask your nearest travelling bike rep. They’re the ones who know where to find the best coffees and will divert miles out of their way on a spurious excuse to secure a good coffee. Ask them nicely and they’ll let you know where to find it too. They’ll talk about Bike Treks in Ambleside, where the alwayssmart Keith will immediately stop work and return shortly afterwards with an Italian, perfect, small cappuccino, complete with biscotti. A visit to Escape Route in Pitlochry is always worthwhile when Kevin Dangerous plies you with enough perfect espressos to make the journey down the A9 bearable. Then there’s Joe at Summit Cycles, who can bluff with the best of them about Fracino espresso machines, and don’t get Michael Bonney from Orange started. His home coffee machine has refuelled many a flagging traveller on their way
back down from the North – again, always served in the right cup (and he’ll remember what he made you last time too) and with a selection of biscuits. Magazine staff notoriously survive on nothing but coffee and strong booze, so they’re always worth a visit. Future, previously the home of awful Nescafé by the bucket (or filter coffee if the publisher’s in the meeting), has moved into a building that has a Starbucks downstairs. Now that’s dedication. And Singletrack? Well, our first machine was quite modest, yet still turned out a fine coffee. However, once we gained more staff it couldn’t keep up and the progression to a full-on, plumbed in machine was inevitable. We now have a Wega machine worthy of a London café and an account with the local coffee roasters. And strangely, we appear to attract a lot of ‘just passing’ reps and bike industry folk, whether they’re heading to Scotland, or they just live down the road. The machine’s always on…
Margin dis-service? Despite it being a sector of the business that pulls higher margins than anywhere else, it is often said that many cycle retailers undercharge in the workshop. Mark Sutton talks to a few retailers about their approach to repairs…
“Two years ago our workshop charges were half of what they stand at today. The rise, however, has not dented the volume of work. Quite the opposite, our workshop is very busy...” Craig Shuff, Swinnertons Cycles
Jake Voelcker (left), Adam Riley (right) and Swinnertons Cycles (below)
JAKE VOELCKER, OWNER, JAKES BIKES Full service charge: £70 labour plus parts. Drivetrain service charge: £35, including necessary braking tweaks. Tube replacement: £4 labour plus tube cost. Bike-in-a-box build: £20 “HIGH STREET shops in Bristol tend to charge a little more than our prices and on the whole, I wouldn't say the industry has a problem with undercharging in the workshop. Typically, I won't charge more for a mucky bike. However if I can see several minor tweaks to be made – such as a alignment of bars, saddles or mudguards – then I may look at the price of the job in terms of labour cost. This is all discussed with the customer on an appointment basis though. As a workshop only business, which sells reconditioned bikes on the side, I'm now considering dropping the sale side of things as the mark up is so poor. This would leave our business able to focus on the massively busy repairs aspect. It wasn't long ago we shifted to a premises with three times the room of the prior building and that's all on the back of the success of the repair business. I also now employ an additional mechanic to assist me with the volume of repairs and reconditioning.” CRAIG SHUFF, SHOP MANAGER, SWINNERTONS CYCLES Full service: £120, including full strip, refit
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and full regrease. Drivetrain service: £60, including brake tuning, safety check and wheel true. Safety Check: £45 Tube replacement: £10 for wheel removal and fit plus the tube’s cost. Bike-in-a-box build: £80 “FROM EXPERIENCE, I'd say plenty of cycle shops do still undercharge, although just two years back, so did Swinnertons. In fact, our prices were 50 per cent lower across the board, yet the increase has done nothing to dent custom. Quite the opposite, our workshop is very busy. We do carry Shimano Service Centre Plus status and I think that gives our customers the confidence that we'll restore a bike to its former glory. We aim for a 24-hour turnaround, meaning we're always busy, yet the mechanics are all Cytech qualified and up to the job. We've recently taken on another member of staff to handle the volume of work. An important role considering the workshop generates around 20 per cent of our shop’s revenue.” ADAM RILEY, SHOP MANAGER, W HOMER CYCLES Full service charge: £35 for a basic checkover, £70 for a comprehensive taking apart greasing and rebuild. Drivetrain Service: £35 Tube replacement: £8.50, including price of tube. Bike-in-a-box build: £35 charge “WE PUT prices up around 15 months back realising that we were operating on too low a
margin. This has had no effect on the footfall of customers seeking repairs and we’ve had a steady flow of traffic since. We installed a bike cleaning booth not too long ago by knocking down a wall in the shop, and so we now offer this service when a customer books a bike in for a full checkover. As rough estimate, I'd say repairs, all completed by myself, bring in 20 per cent of our revenue.” STEVE WILLIAMS, CO-OWNER, HIGHLAND CYCLES Full service charge: £50 plus parts. Drivetrain service: Individually priced based on condition and work needed. Tube replacement: £5 plus the tube’s cost. Bike in a box build: £37.50, however BSOs are turned away “SOME COMPANIES, even larger outfits, overcharge in my opinion. But I think the industry still tends to sell itself to customers a bit cheap. Then again, this all depends on the affluence of your patch. Our set-up is slightly unusual in that we have a separate store for repair work, our old shop, which has a good 12,000 square foot of space to pack the work in. At present we have around 25 bikes in for work. If a bike comes in covered in muck, we'll add a £10 charge to get it clean and workable, but for the few unlucky enough to have picked up dog muck, then we have to refuse the work. A good 20 per cent of our revenue is made up from the repairs business.”
Wednesday September 2nd – 5th Friedrichshafen, Germany www.eurobike-exhibition.de
July 2009 CYCLE VISION Friday July 3rd – 5th Tilburg, Netherlands www.cyclevision.nl RELENTLESS NASS Friday July 10th – 12th Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet, Somerset www.nassfest.com BIKE EXPO Thursday July 23rd – 26th Munich, Germany www.bike-expo.com
September 2009 EUROBIKE 09 Wednesday September 2nd – 5th Friedrichshafen, Germany www.eurobike-exhibition.de TOUR OF BRITAIN 2009 Saturday September 12th – 19th Nationwide www.tourofbritain.com R’BIKE Lyon, France Saturday September 12th – 15th www.rbike.fr FESTIBIKE 2009 Las Rozas, Spain Friday September 18th – 20th www.festibike.com EXPO BICI Padova, Italy Saturday September 19th – 21st www.expobici.it BIKEBIZ.COM
INTERBIKE 2009 Wednesday September 23rd – 25th Las Vegas, USA www.interbike.com
October 2009 PARIS CYCLE SHOW Friday October 2nd – 5th Paris, France mondial-deuxroues.com ROC D’AZUR Frejus, France Wednesday October 7th – 11th www.rocazur.com CYCLE SHOW Thursday October 8th – 11th Earls Court, London www.cycleshow.co.uk BIKE MOTION BENELUX Friday October 30th – November 2nd Utrecht, Holland www.bikemotionbenelux.nl
November 2009 BIKE BRNO Thursday November 5th – 8th Brno, Czech Republic www.bvv.c2/bikebrno-gb EICMA BICYCLE AND MOTORCYCLE SHOW Tuesday Nov 10th – 15th Milan, Italy www.eicma.it
December 2009 TAICHUNG BIKE WEEK Saturday December 5th – 13th Taichung, Taiwan www.taichungbikeweek.com BIKEBIZ JULY15
OFF THE RADAR
What happens on Tour... Future’s road cycling magazines and websites shift into top gear in July as all attention focuses on France. John Stevenson, editorin-chief of the sports group, goes behind the scenes...
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TO DEMONSTRATE what a mighty cycling media empire we are, I asked the editors and key staff members of Procycling, Cycling Plus, BikeRadar.com and Cyclingnews.com to detail the writers and photographers they’d be using to cover the Tour and what they would personally be up to. WHEN THE GOING GETS HECTIC, THE HECTIC TURN PRO Procycling deputy editor Ellis Bacon says: “As well as top Belgian snapper Tim De Waele recording the race through the medium of photography, Procycling will be represented by myself, Peter Cossins and Daniel Friebe in various combinations of two across the three weeks.” “My role will be to interview riders in the start village when they can’t talk because they’re too busy eating crepes, and to interview riders on the finish line when they’re too knackered to talk and feel like crap. “I will also be arguing with Daniel over the map as to where our hotel is, and won’t be doing any of the driving. “And we shall no doubt take care of our (nearly) awardwinning daily podcasts for a
third straight year, which is always a good excuse for not getting magazine features back to the office in a timely fashion.” The most Tour-hardened member of the team, out-going editor Peter Cossins gets straight to priorities. “My role will be to make sure there’s someone around who knows the fastest way to the free press buffet every day and knows how to get the car back to the UK without reversing it into a concrete bollard Xx at high speed,” he says. “I’ll also be trying to get the free dinner and wine that Tim De Waele has promised me. “On a more serious level, I’ll be trying to get Lance Armstrong to speak to the world by any means other than his Twitter account, attempting to get Alberto Contador to say something controversial – anything at all, it needn’t even be about cycling – and hoping that Andy Schleck rides into Paris in yellow as I’ve got a big wedge on him at 11-1.”
to France to cover the biggest cycling race in the calendar, the Tour de France,” he says, puffing on a big cigar. “I will lead the troops on the ground, with able support from lieutenants Gregor Brown, Hedwig Kroner and The Guardian’s Richard Moore. “Along with a splinter group of mercenaries from Procycling magazine, Cyclingnews will be going behind the lines (towards the team buses) and talking to every rider that matters at the start of each stage, gathering post-race quotes and all the news, to bring the readers the most comprehensive and compelling coverage on the net. “Back at Cyclingnews HQ, our homeland troops will be providing daily live coverage from every stage and posting results faster than anyone else. “If you want race coverage, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, you should follow the Cyclingnews team.”
I LOVE IT WHEN A PLAN COMES TOGETHER Probably no publication at Future handles more words and pictures than Cyclingnews in July, with coverage including race reports, interviews, behindthe-scenes features, gear coverage and blogs. Cyclingnews managing editor Daniel Benson is clearly feeling the pressure, and has convinced himself he’s Col Hannibal Smith. “In 2009 a crack commando unit of Cyclingnews journalists and photographers will be sent
SOMETHING’S ON THE RADAR BikeRadar.com’s remit is to cover the whole spectrum of cycling, but it feels like nothing else matters in July. Editor Jeff Jones will be making tech reports his coverage focus. “Our ace tech editor James Huang will be at the Tour to scope out the bikes and gear that the top pros use,” he says. “His eagle eye is capable of spotting non-standard bits from 400 paces. “My role will be making sure we have enough coffee in Bath.
And chocolate. Lots of chocolate. “Our US editor Gary Boulanger will be responsible for keeping the Tour news ticking over after the UK lot have knocked off and gone to the pub.” CYCLING PLUS SEARCH AND REVOLUTIONS In contrast with the glamorous life of Peter, Ellis, the Daniels and the other writers and shooters on the road, Cycling Plus editor Rob Spedding won’t be trekking round France for three weeks. “I’ll be watching it on telly,” he says. Someone has to stay home and make the tea. In the field, though, “we call on some brilliant freelancers to capture the excitement and stories at the Tour,” says Rob. “Photojournalist Rob Lampard has been Cycling Plus’ man on the spot for the past seven years and always delivers great shots and brilliant stories. We’ll also be using images from multi-awardwinning agency Photosport International. “Our pre-Tour issue, on sale in early June, also boasts the writing talents of two men called Moore – Richard and Tim. “Richard is the acclaimed cycling journalist and author of In Search of Robert Millar and Chris Hoy biog Heroes, Villains and Velodromes, while Tim is the renowned travel writer behind French Revolutions – a hilarious account of riding the TdF route – Nul Points, and Spanish Steps.” It’s going to be a huge July.
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Skid, stop and sell Clarks Cycle Systems is fielding an increasingly strong components line-up, introducing kit that is keeping up with the market’s heavy-hitters on the test rigs, but far outperforming rivals on price. Mark Sutton asks the firm’s managing director Tony Wright how… LITTLE KNOWN to many in the trade, Clarks Cables, as it was formerly known, was once a main supplier of braking equipment to the automotive industry. Today, under a new name – Clarks Cycle Systems – the firm has exclusively dedicated its time to the bicycle business. The change of name came at the turn of the millennium, yet the firm’s history dates back to 1943. The modern company is now situated in Tamworth, Staffordshire, having moved premises last year following the re-branding. At the reigns of the stoppingspecialist now is Tony Wright, who has repositioned the company with the ethos of delivering quality, well designed products to market at aggressive price points.
Despite being one of the market’s toughest companies to beat on price, the brand hasn’t been short of innovative achievements in recent years. In 2008, Clarks released the S2 hydraulic brake system, which has been received well at OEM and aftermarket level, with key
“Our research, gained through independent testing, shows us favourably against our competitors.” Tony Wright, MD
features such as sintered pads as standard, braided hoses and reach adjustment at highly competitive prices. For 2009, the firm is releasing the new ‘Skeletal’ hydraulic system. The brake boasts wholly unique bite adjustment, reach adjustment, styling with great control and stopping performance, plus it’s a lightweight package too, placing it firmly among the best of the rest. This system will again be available in colour options with coloured PTFE hoses, which are also going to be available as an aftermarket product themselves. It’s not just investment in its product pushing the firm forward either. Two strong personnel appointments were made during 2008, with the hiring of product designer Paul Toon, along with the recruitment
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Clarks’ new Staffordshire HQ houses the product designers tasked with producing some of the sleekest stoppers on the market
of highly experienced sales and marketing exec Denise Huang, who operates from Taiwan. As the world economy began to slump, like many others, Clarks had to work hard to keep a firm grip on the market share it had gained. Wright explains: “We noticed the periods October 2008 to January 2009 were very hard with all bicycle production halted as the global recession hit manufacturers in Asia. Being a global company we are always aware of currency fluctuations,
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but we believe the opportunities are there for growth within the OEM markets with our strategy and by supplying a full range of aftermarket parts we can reinforce our position within the industry.” So going forward how does Wright plan to further expand the brand’s potential: “This year Clarks has begun advising dealers of promotions on a monthly basis through magazines and this will be supported by our website, which is being modified to
include all product ranges, distributor sections, podcasts showing fitting guides along with a blog and a forum.” A range of mechanical brakes are also currently in development, which will mainly be sold to OEM customers. Like all other Clarks product, the new gear will be tested in facilities here in the UK, as well as abroad. “Independent testing both in institutes in England, for instance on the ‘effects of heat’, have given us huge quantities of data
we use in product development, along with bench mark testing at source to determine a product’s longevity and effectiveness. Our research results show us favourably against our competitors. This solid foundation is the basis for improvement, innovation and success at Clarks,” comments Wright. The firm is seeking further dealerships to carry its ever-growing portfolio too. Wright adds: “Clarks has always been a reliable company
to deal with and bicycle dealers are invited to make contact with us or our distributors if they are interested in carrying any of our product ranges. “As our range expands we are looking to further support our customers with regular productbased promotions and incentives, along with a detailed catalogue of spares and replacement parts which will allow dealerships to further service their customer’s needs through our comprehensive range.”
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high-end Halfords has dedicated far greater time and resource to expanding its cycle business in the past two years. Cycle Republic might have been a nonstarter, but commercial director Paul McClenaghan confirms to Jonathon Harker that going forward the firm aims to focus on quality as well as quantity...
“Our approach has always been to provide good service and make sure we have the right bike for our customers.” Paul McClenaghan, Halfords
HALFORDS’ decision to call time on two of its retail brands, announced in its April fiscal update, shocked many in the cycle trade. But the superstore chain promised that many of the lessons learnt from Cycle Republic and Bikehut would be filtered into its main stores – including the high-end ranges the stores sold – sparking speculation over whether that meant the firm would be cutting back on its existing ranges, or if it meant Halfords was going to dedicate more space to cycling in its stores. BikeBiz asks commercial director Paul McClenaghan what the decision really means for Halfords, discusses the firm’s considerable achievement of delivering a profit despite tough trading conditions and talks about how the firm is ramping up its efforts to target the highend market in a big way…
Are you pleased with Halfords recent results considering the economic climate? Halfords has continued to perform well, despite the economic backdrop, particularly in our core business, including cycling and car maintenance. We’ve seen very healthy likefor-like growth in both of those categories. And despite the overall like-for-like decline in the overall business, our active management and what we’ve put into place early on to manage margins and reduce costs has allowed us to deliver growth for the year. It also just re-emphasises how resilient our business is. Has Halfords size helped it through the recession? I think our scale, particularly with direct sourcing, has allowed us to both manage our cost base and manage our margin. Also,
our relationship with suppliers has allowed us more flexibility than smaller retailers have. Do you believe the cycle trade is bearing up in general, despite the recession? I think it is a great time to be in the cycle business. The combination of concerns over the environment, concerns over health and fitness – particularly with children, the lifestyle of cycling and the economy causing people to want to find cheaper ways to commute – these all lead to the industry having a really good start to 2009 and also for the end of last year too. I think it’s a really good time to be involved in the cycle trade. For us at Halfords, our continued success of Boardman along with some growth from GT and the introductions of the new premium brands we’re looking
to bring out as standalones, have given us the opportunity for further growth on the back of the momentum of the whole cycling industry. Halfords sold one third of bikes purchased in the UK in the last 12 months. Are you planning to increase that proportion? Our approach has always been to provide good customer service and make sure we’ve got the right bike for the customer, based around choice, value for money and exceptional service in the store. And that, together with the multi-channel convenience we’ve developed with our Reserve and Collect platform, has delivered us growth and delivered our share gains. But while market share is important it’s really a reference to our performance in the context of the industry and it’s
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only desirable to grow it if we can do that with sustainable profitability. We’re not chasing market share for market share gains, we’re trying to make sure we can sustain a profit that we can deliver for our business. We want to to improve our market share in particular areas – I think it’s widely known that there are opportunities to grow our cut of the premium market and our aim is to grow profitable market share in the high-end market. The success of Boardman and GT added to the strong performance of some premium accessory brands have all given us the confidence that we can acheive that. I think that’s where we’ll get our growth from in the future. Halfords has said that the wider ranges found in Cycle Republic and Bikehut store will be incorporated into Halfords stores. Does that mean you’ll cut back on the existing bike offering to squeeze in the extra ranges? Or will more floor space be dedicated to bicycles in Halfords stores? We’ve obviously done some detailed analysis around the opportunity, and one of the things that is clear is that we have 130 superstores that can easily accommodate both our existing core range and our premium range that we want to bring in from the standalone stores. We want to continue to offer our customers the best available choice across the range of cycling disciplines. By
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introducing the premium ranges we will only add to that. It won’t be at the expense of our mass market offer. Of the 130 stores that can accommodate the range around 100 of those have got the right demographics of people who will deliver a return on investment within our premium market. How many shops will the rebranding exercise affect? The majority of the stores have already been rebranded to Metro. That was completed between May 9th to 16th. There is one bike store in York which is currently trading as Cycle Republic and we don’t have any firm plans for that yet. We’ll carry on till the end of June and it may close then. But it’s the only store that I envisage could close. York in particular stands out – we’ve already got a good Metro store there anyway, and there’s a store not that far away and it’s an obvious one. We’ve already converted five of the other stores and there are two that we’re converting now. Halfords has recently referred to online success – especially in the bike accessories market. Can you reveal what percentage of your cycle business is done online? Online represents about five per cent of our total sales and growth has been high doubledigit for the last two years. It’s a much higher percentage for cycling actually. I think the reason why we’re enjoying such
good growth on the web for cycling is because of Reserve and Collect. We find that about 90 per cent of customers online, when given the choice between direct delivery or reserving and collecting in-store, choose to reserve in-store. The reason for collecting in store is one of convenience and also one of added value. 90 per cent of the UK population live within an 18 minute drive time of a Halfords store so it’s convenient to collect on the way to or from work or at the weekend. We also add value to the transaction by obviously building the bike ready for collection, making sure it’s sized correctly for the customer when they arrive and also just giving good service and advice for what they might need for activities on their bike. There’s a value add reason to go and choose your bike at leisure on the internet and then go in store to collect and get that great Halfords experience. What’s next for online is for us to add more variety to our accessories lines, which can also make use of the increasingly popular Reserve and Collect offering. We currently range between 2,000 and 2,500 lines on the cycle accessories side and we’re planning to put another 2,000 on during the summer. We want to make sure we have a very credible offer on our website for cyclists. Is the cycle business becoming increasingly important to Halfords? How does it
compare with the car side of the business? Our car business is primarily made up of consumables – wiper blades, antifreeze – whatever it may be. That’s still a very vibrant growing business and will continue to be a high driver of footfall for our stores. The cycling business is part of our leisure division, representing a significant chunk of that business and is important to us. I think it does give us the opportunity to bring families into the Halfords environment. We’ll continue to service a broad church of customers, particularly families and we’re very keen on getting young kids onto bikes. We can play our part in that positive objective and it’s also a good way of improving our business. Our focus has tended to be primarily on family cycling, and I think our emphasis on premium bikes is actually a reflection of what is happening across the consumer market at the moment. People are looking to buy better bikes, they’re looking to commute more, and they’re taking their cycling much more seriously. There’s clearly also a fashion element which people want to get involved in and our ranging now reflects that. It’s an important and growing part of our business.
“Introducing premium ranges will add to our offering. It won’t be at the expense of our mass market ranges.” Paul McClenaghan, Halfords
BIKEBIZ JULY 25
Worth a punt? Cambridge is one of the UK’s foremost cycling cities, but do its retailers support the burgeoning electric bike sector, or do they advise against it? BikeBiz’s Mystery Shopper investigates how the bike shops of the city handle customers looking for ebikes and sought-after £500 road bikes…
Ben Hayward Cycles
THE BUSTLING Ben Hayward Cycles is situated on a busy road at the centre of the cycling city. It has served the residents of Cambridge for 90 years and was taking a bike delivery when the Mystery Shopper arrived. Inside the medium-sized shop, bike labels clearly displayed prices, but there was little indication of basic features for each bike to guide browsing shoppers. After approaching a sales assistant, I discovered that the store didn’t stock electric bikes but was helpfully told of a local dealer which does serve the sector. Leading the conversation, I quizzed the sales assistant over whether the shop had any road bikes in the region of £500 in stock. He showed me a Trek bike for £570, but that was the only one offered. He discussed the lightness of the bike and, after prompting, told our Mystery Shopper that with bike purchases the shop offered a one-year guarantee and a free first service by the in-house workshop, located nearby. Overall, the sales assistant offered friendly service and was happy to provide some advice. While not offering a wide range of the type of bikes enquired about, the dealer did take the time to provide help and assistance, while also offering literature to look over.
ALSO SITUATED on a busy thoroughfare close to the centre of Cambridge, Howes Cycles is another bike shop boasting a rich heritage, having been established over 150 years ago. After browsing the store uninterrupted, Mystery Shopper approached the shop assistant to enquire about electric bikes. I was told that the store didn’t offer any. I wasn’t offered any alternative nor was I directed to a nearby dealer that did. I also enquired after a road bike for around £500 and was informed that the shop had no stock – except for one model left. The sales assistant didn’t take the time to go over any of the features, or the price of the bike, just said “it’s a bit small” – for me presumably. I was told the shop was waiting for delivery of 2010 stock and I had to ask when that would be arriving rather than be offered the information. Neither was there an offer to take my contact details to inform me when new stock would be arriving. Perhaps the sales assistant had assumed that as they didn’t have anything I’d asked for that they were unlikely to procure a sale from me. But it would have been nice to have seen some effort to encourage a potential customer to come back when stock wasn’t in such short supply.
CAMBRIDGE STATION CYCLES impressed, and was one of the star stores visited in the city. Unsurprisingly located next to the station, the retailer offers a range of services to customers, including cycle hire and repairs. Bikes on special offer were displayed outside the store close to the entrance, while inside the vast building there were plenty of bikes and staff on hand. After browsing, a staff member stood nearby, ready to offer help. After answering questions on the two electric bikes on offer, the assistant discussed the store’s comparatively vast array of road bikes – both cheaper and within the price range requested – £500. The sales assistant discussed brands and features with me at length and explained the differences between bikes in different price categories – primarily in the quality of components. I was told that if you get a Shimano 105 groupset on a £500 bike, “then you’re laughing”. I was informed that road bikes had been particularly popular this year and stocks were lower than usual, but the store still had a good range available. Overall, this shop was excellent – namely due to the staff member’s willingness to explain and take the time to provide enthusiastic, honest advice.
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ON THE SAME road as Cycle King, Discount Cycles is a smaller shop claiming to be an electric bike specialist – a promise the store lived up to. Greeted as soon as I entered the shop, the sales assistant came over despite being in the middle of another task. He explained the differences and key features of the strong selection of ebikes. The store’s inventory included electric folders, electric BMX-style bikes and electric road bikes. The sales assistant explained several features of the bikes, including the fact that the battery can be taken out of each bike so that it can be used as a ‘normal’ bike. I asked about servicing and was told that the retailer handles that in-store, except for electric maintenance – for which bikes have to be returned to the manufacturer. The sales assistant went on to assure Mystery Shopper that electric bikes rarely go wrong, with anecdotes of satisfied customers: “I saw someone on it today and they are very happy.” Visiting Discount Cycles was an impressive experience. Again the sales assistant took the time to explain, discuss and advise, while also assuring that the electric bikes are reliable machines. The small-sized shop itself was well laid out, with good labelling and bikes displayed in a way that allowed close examination.
CLOSER TO the town on the same busy thoroughfare as Discount Cycles and Cycle King, CAM Cycles is another smaller-sized shop where Mystery Shopper was greeted on entry. The friendly staff member worked on a repair frontof-store as he chatted to me. I was told that the retailer didn’t stock electric bikes, but was soon given details of a nearby shop that did sell them. When asked about circa £500 road bikes, the sales assistant recommended Bronx, telling me that the brand offered a good range in a number of sectors. He handed me a Bronx ‘09 catalogue to help me make a decision on my potential purchase without going through any features of the road bike on offer from CAM.
THE CYCLE KING is another generously sized store in Cambridge. Situated on a busy road heading into the city, and appearing to take up the space of two retail units, Cycle King was extremely busy during Mystery Shopper’s visit. With competitive pricing at the value end of the market, Cycle King has a huge children’s section at the front of the store, with bikes clearly labelled with prices and key features. The store was so busy that I had to intercept a sales assistant on the way to another task. “Road bikes above £250 are a bit out of our market,” he admitted, but the store did stock some electric bikes. The sales assistant pointed me in the direction of the relevant stock rather than taking me over and talking me through the features. Before the sales assistant left to deal with another customer I asked whether the store had a workshop and was informed that it did and was warned that the store “only services bikes that we’ve sold” when asked about electric servicing. Overall Mystery Shopper’s visit to Cycle King was brief during a very busy period for the store. Obviously the store is doing lots of things right.
PLACED ON a retail park just outside Cambridge city centre, Halfords sits alongside other outlets including MFI, Pizza Hut and Burtons. The bike offering is located upstairs in the store, in the ‘Bikehut’ area. A selection of road bikes was dominated by Halfords’ exclusive Chris Boardman bikes, which were placed in the area near to the stairs, close to where the customer enters the section. After spending some time looking at the displays I made my way to the counter to speak to a staff member. The sales assistant was happy to provide some advice, but remained behind the counter without taking me to the relevant bikes he mentioned or going into specific details to explain the bike features. The store’s selection didn’t include any electric bikes, but encouragingly, the sales assistant did go on to recommend and provide directions to a local dealer that did stock ebikes. When asked about bike servicing at the store, the sales assistant recommended that Mystery Shopper should opt for the cheaper of the two services on offer to customers – which was a surprisingly honest piece of advice to be offered.
Summary IN A CITY this well served with bike shops, Mystery Shopper was only able to visit a limited selection of Cambridge’s cycle retailers. Of those visited, the shops impressed in the main while also confirming the truism that bike shops are staffed with knowledgeable and enthusiastic sales personnel. The student market undoubtedly dominates Cambridge’s cycling scene, but it was encouraging to see that the pro cycling city, often held up as an example to others, is supporting the burgeoning electric bike sector, with three out of the seven shops stocking ebikes. In the opinion of Mystery Shopper, Cambridge Station Cycles and electric-specialist Discount Cycles were by far the best of the shops surveyed on the day, with their staff prepared to take the time to explain features and guide potential customers.
BIKEBIZ JULY 27
A specialist tweed cycle suit – not quite mainstream yet
Suits you! Cycle clothing goes chic. Can and should the bike trade latch on? Carlton Reid dons his tweed cycling suit to find out...
“Many people are put off by the Lycra image and want clothes that they can feel comfortable in.” David Ellis, TfL
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HAUTE COUTURE cycling apparel is a slow-burn trend that’s influencing the mainstream. Earlier this year, items from the Cyclodelic range of women’s cycle clothing accessories were introduced in Topshop’s flagship store on Oxford Street in London. Designed and handmade by two female cyclists in their East London studio, Cyclodelic products are for “girls who cycle but who don’t have to forfeit fashion over function,” says Cyclodelic co-founder Amy Fleuriot, a London College of Fashion student. In 2005, there was the Armani range of bikes; Sir Paul Smith famously loves bikes and bike clobber; and, in 2008, London bike shop Velorution staged a fashion show called Prêt à Rouler. Prada even had a range of ‘Bicycle’ shoes (sadly, not SPD-compatible) and fashionista Cynthia Rowley’s Spring 2008 collection included gold bicycle pendants on models riding cruisers. Cycling togs can be high fashion, they can be low fashion (hopefully, there will be no mainstream return for Lycra skin shorts, momentarily fashionable in the 1980s) and much of the cross-over is bubbling up, as always, from the ‘street’. Tight
jeans, with a u-lock sticking out of the back pocket, is one iconic item from what could be called ‘messenger style’ and it influences the bike commuter clothes produced by Tyler Clements and Abe Burmeister, who founded Outlier Tailored of New York. This young brand’s cycle clothing is almost always sold out on the website at www.outlier.cc, even though the 4Season OG Pant costs a mouth-watering $180. Another urban commuting line of clothing is Bspoke, produced by Fisher Outdoor Leisure under licence from Transport for London. Bspoke is a ‘clothing collection for men and women who love cycling, but not traditional cycling clothing. The range performs within an urban environment and yet has a timeless fashion for day/work wear.’ David Ellis, TfL’s head of intellectual development, says: “There are a number of barriers to encouraging people to cycle, including what to wear. Many people are put off by the Lycra image and want clothes they feel comfortable in.” Richard Allmark, CEO of Fisher Outdoor, agrees: “We have long believed that this customer segment of the cycling market has been overlooked. There is
clearly huge potential to explore in this market.” Sold from the TfL website, as well as growing number of bike shops across the UK, Bspoke is smart cycle clothing, yet it’s not as exclusive nor as expensive as the tailored garments sold by custom cycle clothing specialists. Dashing Tweeds of London is one such specialist – a favourite of MTB pioneer Gary Fisher, who says: “It’s impressive to people when you arrive on a bicycle looking elegant”. It was founded by style photographer Guy Hills and RCA-trained weaver Kirsty McDougall. They produce ‘classic tweeds with a twist’ – tweeds with retroreflective yarns, for instance. The Dashing Tweeds cycle suit is tailored by Russell Howarth of London. In Lancaster, Zaynan Lythgoe opened Practical Cycles, a shop specialising in cargo bikes. He’s about to start producing Practical Cyclewear – cycle clothing that doesn’t look like cycle clothing. And this was also the theme of a cycling fashion show held in New York in early June. Fashion house LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton asked students at the New York Fashion Institute of Technology to create chic yet affordable cycling gear.
Janette Sadik-Khan, commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation, said at the launch: “Having functioning, attractive gear so you can arrive at work looking stylish should be encouraged. No one wants to show up at work looking like bike messengers.” They don’t? Rich Kelly, marketing manager for the Interbike trade show in the US, says the new bike culture is largely operating outside of the mainstream bike industry: “Fixies, bike polo, fashion, models on bikes, and custom bike shows all exist outside of the typical bike company-to-retailer-to-cyclist ecosystem. Few traditional bike companies are successfully tapping into it in a legitimate way. It relies on Craigslist, dumpsters, the fashion industry, new boutique urban bike shops, and other mysterious outlets to spread the word and the style, and reap the benefits.” Of course fashion, by definition, is fickle and tapping into bicycle haute couture could be an easy way for an IBD to burn lots of money. But, as Bspoke is showing, it’s possible to cater for cyclists – especially new cyclists – who don’t want to flag up the fact they’ve travelled by bike.
BIKE RADAR LIVE
The Future of biking events The first ever BikeRadar Live was touted as Britain’s biggest bike bash. Jonathon Harker and Chris Keller Jackson headed over to Castle Donington witness the festival firsthand and see if it delivered on its promise… FUTURE PUBLISHING’S unique bike festival, which took place over the weekend of May 30th – 31st got off to a strong start, attracting 8,472 attendees for its debut showing. Even more crucially though, the event that sought to attract cyclists from all disciplines while remaining family-friendly showed plenty of potential for the future. The Donington Park setting, widely expected to play host to the British F1 Grand Prix next year, certainly ticked the boxes for further growth with the infrastructure, services and road systems more than adequate for the festivals requirements. BACK TO THE FUTURE BikeRadar Live wasn’t Future’s first foray into bike shows – the last was at Stoneleigh Park in 2004 (and prior to that at the NEC). The show’s absence from the scene had arguably left a space for a consumer event calendar that has not been filled since. Fast-forward five years and there were mutterings of a very British ‘Sea Otter’ arriving in the Midlands. And there were certainly similarities between BikeRadar Live and the US event; a hilly and undulating race track, both Laguna Seca and Donington offering such a challenge, a vibe of its own, serious international racing stars across several disciplines, dusty
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trails and wall-to-wall sunshine. Certainly, having amazing weather drove the crowds in, significantly boosting the prebooked figure. BikeRadar Live’s debut saw an impressive trade attendance too, with several big bike manufacturers pushing the boat out, including Scott and Giant. There were plenty of smaller manufacturers and trade distributors there too, showing off their wares and giving people the chance to touch, feel and ride their products. An impressive cocktail of old, new and bizarre from the cycling world appeared at the festival. Celebrities, talks and film screening with MBUK darling Steve Peat the ‘Royal Star of the Show’ along with Mark Webber, Graham Obree and Stephen Roache actively participating in the varied events. Even Hans Rey made an appearance late on the Sunday. Just like Sea Otter, BikeRadar Live saw some product launches, notably ‘The Steve Peat Fender’ and a soft launch for Exposure Lights innovative ‘WhiteEye’ which powered the 12 Hour Enduro winner to victory (see box-out). COME ONE, COME ALL Surely though, the greatest achievement of the weekend was BikeRadar Live’s ability to
amalgamate and include much of cycling at one venue, and under one umbrella. Serious Pro Dirt Jumpers and heavily armoured International Downhillers mixed freely with Folder riders, ‘Bents, Time Trialists and Sportive Riders. This was inclusive, very family friendly, non-threatening and at times, awe-inspiring. You could stay all weekend, borrow a bike, get to speak with one of your favourite riders and have a good meal followed by DJ sessions that lasted into the small hours. BikeRadar staff writers and testers were on hand all weekend to answer questions, along with commentators and senior figures within Future. From Future CEO Simon Wear to magazine staff, every figure camped on-site all weekend. Staff immersed themselves in the event, making themselves accessible, helping to understand how the public perceived the show, catering and facilities. It seemed that Future pulled it off, and for those who attended (traders and the public) there were smiles all round. The UK responded to the eclectic cycling show, with its central location accessible and flexible, and given the adverse economic climate in consumer-land, this could only have been seen as the successful building blocks for 2010 and a bigger and better event.
The crowds got the chance to see Danny MacAskil and Sam Pilgrim (r) in action
The view from the Future But how was it for them? BikeBiz did the gentlemenly thing and asked Future how it thought the debut bike bonanza fared. BikeBiz spoke to publishing director Peter Stothard to get his verdict, and to find out what’s next for the fledgling festival… Are you happy with how the event went? Do you have any particular highlights? We are incredibly happy. The reaction from visitors, exhibitors, riders and sponsors has been overwhelmingly positive. For me, the weather was a highlight and seeing hundreds starting the Cycling Plus Sportive and Gee and Brian going head-to-head in the MBUK Dual Slalom Final will take a long-time to forget. For Future, the weekend will be remembered as a fantastic
BIKE RADAR LIVE
Industry matters BIKERADAR LIVE wasn’t lacking in trade support despite being an unproven concept in its debut year. Many big names from the industry gave their backing to the event including Dahon, Fisher Outdoor Leisure, Moore Large, Extra, Leisure Lakes, Raleigh, Ison, Giant and Garmin, to name a few. The festival also showcased a selection of new products, including the launch of Exposure Lights’ WhiteEye. The production version of the WhiteEye showcased at the festival builds on ‘Smart Port Technology’ introduced last year, where the charging port can be used as a power device for peripheral devices. Early port devices included a RedEye rear light and Micro version for their popular Joystick, along
first year – we wanted people of all ages and disciplines to be united by their love of bikes and BRL did not disappoint. Did BikeRadar Live exceed your expectations? We learnt a great deal from year one. It has established a solid base for our events team to build on. We felt the time was right to launch a bike event and the response from the trade and attendance backed our hunch. There is an appetite for BRL that we’ll build on. How successful was BRL in attracting different sectors of biking to the same event? This was a proper cycling festival – roadies and mountain bikers, families and young males mixing together. With everyone complementing the atmosphere, we would seek to keep the relaxed vibe as we grow the size and scope of the event. Getting kids on bikes was
with a remote bar mount switch. The WhiteEye has been designed to double up the output of the Joystick, offering 480 Lumens for just over 40 grams weight. Powered from the Joystick Smart Port it provides the same level of output as the next product up in the range (The Race), with a shorter burn time, but no weight penalty (the race is not helmet mountable). At its first outing, the WhiteEye powered to victory in the Whyte Bikes / Exposure Lights sponsored 12 hour enduro. Exposure Lights had a great response from the public flowing round the stands and generated a lot of interest in the unveiling of the new WhiteEye.
Steve Peat was also in attendance at BikeRadar Live, both to race and to show off his latest product – Fast Fender. Long a collaborator with ‘Mr Crud’, Pete Tompkins, a signature front mudguard has been created to suit downhill and freeride duties, along with fashion-conscious riders. Crud has always taken an innovative stance to guarding against being covered in mud, having pioneered effective down tube mounting. This new product simplifies the mounting of a forward facing motocross style guard, in that the fender is clamped to the handlebars rather than the more traditional steerer tube or fork brace. There are also stable mounting points on the product for number boards.
Steve Peat shows off the brand new Fast Fender at BikeRadar Live (left) while one brave biker takes on the Dirt Jump (above),just one of the many areas that the general public could participate
important to Future – and hundreds of kids left Donington inspired – wanting to be the next Gee Atherton, Graham Obree or Danny MacAskill. What elements do you hope are improved on next year? Over the coming weeks we'll be closely evaluating all elements of the event. We're actively asking exhibitors and attendees for their feedback, and we'll make sure this is incorporated in our plans for next year. Were you happy with trade support for the event? We would like to thank exhibiting partners for supporting us. Response has been so positive that we've already had requests for more retailer space and bigger sponsorship opportunities for next year. We've proven the BikeRadar Live concept works and we look forward to 2010 with increased trade support.
BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME: BikeRadar Live naturally showcased Future’s cycling portfolio in the big top, as well as bicycle-based activities
BIKEBIZ JULY 31
On Friday June 12th at Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s Birthday Honours were handed to a number of cycle industry and sport figures. Mark Sutton documents a proud day for cycling…
BOB CHICKEN PAST PRESIDENT of the Pedal Club and Pickwick Bicycle Club, Bob Chicken set out in the bicycle trade in 1949, taking on a role within his father's bicycle business established in 1919. Now living in Madeira, Bob has spent his life working within the bike trade and promoting cycling to the masses, becoming a key industry spokesman as cycling enjoyed the heydey that was the 1950s. Having lived through the Second World War, Chicken strongly believed in European unity and became involved with European markets, bringing a number of admired foreign brands to the UK. Last year, the trade also nominated and chose Chicken as the winner of BikeBiz's own Industry Achievement award, cementing his place as an industry icon. Author Greame Fife has documented Chicken's life in a biography titled A Passion for the Bike, which is available via Chicken Cyclekit, as well as a number of book stores nationwide. Cedric Chicken, the director of Chicken Cyclekit, commented on the MBE awarded to his father, stating it was a "very special day for Bob and for the family." CHRIS HOY NOW A household name, Chris Hoy has achieved a remarkable amount in a short space of time, even beating F1's Lewis Hamilton to the Sports
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Image © British Cycling
Image © Phil O’Connor
Image © BCA Film
Sirs and Dames
Personality of the Year award. Hoy is only the second cyclist to win the prestigious award. The three Olympic Golds Hoy earned in Beijing instantly made him a cycling icon and placed him in the record books as the first Brit to do the triple for 100 years. Little known to many, Hoy began his cycling career racing BMX between the ages of seven and 14, ranking second in Britain at one stage. The instant fame has also brought about a number of opportunities for Hoy to
Wiggins as “the best pursuiter of all time”. Wiggins, who has a long history of track Golds in the World Track Championships, picked up his CBE. DAVID BRAILSFORD AS THE man of the moment immediately after the close of the Beijing Olympics, the press was frantically trying to pinpoint exactly where Brailsford would be coaching in the run up to the 2012 Olympics. Working on the theory that lots of small gains equates to
“Bob was presented with the MBE by Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace. It was a very special day for him and for the family.” Cedric Chicken, Chicken Cyclekit promote cycling, notably a partnership with cereal manufacturer Kelloggs. Hoy was presented with his Knighthood by Prince Charles, while his mother was also awarded an MBE for her services to healthcare at the same ceremony. BRADLEY WIGGINS Sharing the Beijing limelight, Bradley Wiggins was also recognised at Buckingham Palace for his two Golds – one in the team pursuit and the other in the pursuit. Lance Armstrong is reported to have hailed
one large progression, the performance director's transformation of Team GB into a medal winning machine drew attention globally with some reports suggesting he was approached by other nations to train their cyclists. At the last meet of the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group in Westminster, Brailsford did however hint that he may be in charge of a an expanded Team GB, including a possible 'freestyle BMX team'. Brailsford's contract with British Cycling runs until 2012. However, it has been confirmed
Bob Chicken; far left, Chris Hoy, middle and David Brailsford
by the man himself that there is a 'get out' clause should he choose to pursue other interests. Brailsford, pictured above, is shown with his OBE. PETER KING AND TONY YORKE British Cycling's executive director, Peter King, was awarded a CBE on the back of his 12 years service to the organisation. King took over at BC when membership was hitting new lows, yet as sports governing bodies go, it’s now one of the most successful around under his stewardship. King is also a tireless fundraiser for a prostate cancer charity, having been diagnosed himself back in 2004. Former national manager of the Paralympic Team, Tony Yorke also received an OBE for his role in bringing Paralympic cycling governance to the UCI. ELLEN HUNTER Ellen Hunter, the Welsh paralympian who won both the individual pursuit and the kilo time trail at the Beijing Games, also collected her MBE. Previously, Hunter has scooped Golds at the 2004 Paralympics and both the 2006 and 2007 World Disability Championships. Ed Clancy, Geraint Thomas, Jason Kenny, Jamie Staff, Paul Manning, Nicole Cooke, Victoria Pendleton and Rebecca Romero also become MBEs for each of their individual Gold medal achievements.
BIKEBIZ JULY 33
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BRAND SPOTLIGHT HARO
Sizing up the
market… WHO WOULD believe that perhaps the biggest BMX brand in existence emerged from a simple garage-based production of race plates? Well that’s how BMX icon Bob Haro set out and a decade later freestyle was born with the launch of the Haro Freestyler frame and fork. Since then, freestyle BMX has dipped in and out of fashion in turn with the skateboarding world. But today, the sector is once again thriving and Moore Large sure is glad it bagged the rights to the legendary brand in the UK, especially considering its expansion into the MTB world. BMX AND BEYOND Brand manager Adam Garner tells BikeBiz: “Dealers certainly are recognising Haro as more than just a BMX brand now. Since we re-launched it at the end of 2007 into areas other than BMX, it’s fair to say the brand has gone from strengthto-strength. “Dealers that have supported us with our BMX bikes have been prepared to take on the ATB lines too and are selling them with great success. With increased marketing activity we
have been able to put Haro into the public eye. Haro ATB lines were certainly a huge success over two weekends at BikeRadar Live and the Mountain Bike World Cup up at Fort William. Haro Bikes also now covers mountain, freeride, dirt jump, urban, comfort, commute and beach cruiser.” Although yet to make a firm impression in Europe, Haro has also dabbled with the 29-inch wheel concept, although Garner points to the half-way mark as the real success. “When we launched the two 29ers last year (the Mary XC and the Mary SS) we were in the boom for this market. Sales and interest were fantastic, although it has levelled off in the last 12 months. And it’s just the beginning for big wheeled bikes. “We have had tremendous success with the launch of the 650B wheeled bikes, the idea being that the wheel measures 27.5” and therefore sits half way between the standard 26 and the 29er. In theory you get the same big wheel feel of the 29er, rolling smoothly over everything they encounter on a trail while offering the rider an amazing
Created by Bob Haro in the 1970s, Haro Bicycles is a household BMX brand, which in recent years has cleverly diversified its offering. Mark Sutton talks to UK brand manager Adam Garner about 29ers, racing teams and Haro’s sister brand…
amount of traction on the climbs.” BMX is as in focus as ever though, and Moore Large has placed a large commitment by adopting Haro’s sister brand Premium Products. The brand offers both complete bikes
“At launch the 29ers sales were fantastic. It’s just the beginning for big wheeled bikes.”
ranging from mid-to-high-end, as well as a number of indemand components. Garner said of the brand: “Premium Products has been created by Haro and is aimed at the cooler, less commercial rider. Premium has performed very well and not only do we offer a complete range of components but seven different complete bikes too, with RRP prices from £299.95 to £649.95. “Premium Products is worth considering as it is designed by world-class riders, the dealer margin is very attractive and most importantly it is made by Haro so RRPs are sensible.” RIDER REPRESENTATION With a number of pro riders on the brand’s books, it’s no wonder sponsorship plays a big part in the marketing of both Haro and Premium. After all Haro began with one rider designing parts for other riders. “What is a brand without rider representation?” asks Garner. “Moore Large has recognised that it is important to support riders on the Haro brand to firstly keep the brand in the public eye and secondly to
get the riders’ input on the bikes themselves. After all it’s a wellknown fact the people buy bikes that are ridden by top pro riders. Our investment in BMX race this season has paid off and we now have one full factory BMX race team and one dealer BMX race team. Both are doing amazingly well and sales for Haro BMX race bikes have gone through the roof this year.” ML has confirmed the brand is already up 20 per cent year-onyear in terms of bike sales. That’s something many will attribute to the modernisation of the brand and the appointment of new San Diego-based designers, with high-profile ad campaigns featuring competition-winning riders such as veteran Ryan Nyquist and Dennis Enarson. “Exclusivity is very important on this branded product,” concludes Garner. “So existing dealers are dealt with as a priority.” However, stockists are sought across the UK and Garner frequently visits prospective partners. To learn more about Haro Bikes and Premium Products, contact email@example.com, or call 07971 991630.
BIKEBIZ JULY 35
SERVICE: GOING THE EXTRA MILE
From Bike It to Bike Fit There’s only one ‘f’ difference, but while Bike Fit is a money spinner for bicycle retailers, Bike It is community payback for Corridorri Cycle Sport of Surrey, reports Carlton Reid... CORRIDORRI CYCLE Sport isn’t a full Specialized Concept Store but, if you pardon the pun, it specialises in the brand. It was also the first IBD in the UK to become a Specialized ‘Body Geometry Bike Fit center’. Owner Guy Rowland knows a thing or two about going faster on bikes with dialled in fit: he’s been a national champion on the track and in 1986 was a medalist at the Commonwealth Games staged in Edinburgh. He rode in the four-man team pursuit – which also included 1992 Olympic Pursuit Champion Chris Boardman. Along with Paul Smith, formerly of Pearson Cycles in Sutton, and GB Cycles of Croydon (at which he managed the CTC mail order shop), Rowland trained as a Body Geometry Bike Fitter. He’s owned the shop for 17 years, which two years ago expanded into its current premises, five times bigger than the old. Space was set aside for bike fitting. “We wanted to offer a little bit more than putting a customer’s heel on a pedal and saying ‘yeah, that’s about right’,” says Rowland. “I’ve had a few bike fits in my time and I like the Body
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Geometry one best. Others wanted to change my existing position, but without giving me sensible reasons for doing so. “We’ve now done a couple of hundred bike fits. Unless a rider has a severe issue – such as different limb lengths – we don’t find we’re radically changing riders’ positions. It’s fine tuning, but fine tuning that can make a huge difference in comfort and power.” Rowland and Smith restrict the bike fits to one a day and charge £120 per fitting. “We could do more fits each day but it’s very time intensive. In the beginning we did a lot more fits per day because we were the first accredited shop. People were travelling from all over the UK.” The shop’s biggest sell-on after a bike fit is orthopaedics. “We sell a lot of shoe inserts,” says Rowlands. He doesn’t feel the need to recommend many oversize or undersize accessories. “A brand like Specialized is getting component and frame sizes right. We’re not in the business of bike fit to sell new stems. Most bikes have enough adjustability. “A bike fit, for us, is a chance to win over customers, it’s not a
“We don’t make money from Bike It but it’s essential to stay involved at grass roots. Not everything has to be for profit. ” Guy Rowland, Corridorri Cycle Sport
one-time thing. It’s a good chance to set up a personal service. If we do the job right, and don’t just flog one stem for the sake of it, we’ve got a great chance of retaining them. “We get a lot of referral work from customers who’ve had a bike fit from us, referrals for the shop not just the bike fitting. Some customers travel past many other shops to get to us. Bike fitting leads to wonderful word-of-mouth referrals.” Most of Corridorri’s bike fit customers are roadies, mainly older, sportive-type riders, with larger-than-average expendable incomes, and with a taste for £1,500 road bikes. A lot unlike the average Bike It customer. Bike It is the trade seed-funded scheme to get more school children riding bikes. The Bike It officer for Epsom is Gayle Rowson. She approached Rowlands and Corridorri is now one of Rowson’s most enthusiastic bike shops. Not because Bike It is a money spinner, but because it’s altruistic – and it’s creating customers of the future. “We run Dr Bike sessions in local schools,” explains Rowlands. “We check over the bikes. We don’t work on them.
We leave a note if a particular bike isn’t up to scratch mechanically, listing what needs doing. We’ll do a discounted repair for Bike It children but, of course, every school is different and there can be a huge variation in parental incomes. We tell teachers which are the ones that shouldn’t be ridden. Some are unfixable because they were bought for fifty quid from a corner motor accessories shop. “We don’t make money from Bike It but I feel it’s essential to stay involved at the grass roots. When we started the shop we didn’t have much money, and worked a lot more back then on bikes we’d not think are worth repairing today. We lost a bit of that and it’s good to go back to see what the real world is like, not just the world of the enthusiast. It also brings back a lot of the community feel. Kids used to come into us and we looked after them. I run a bike shop to make a living but it’s my hobby, I enjoy doing it, I like seeing people on bikes. “If a kid came in and had no money but was really motivated about cycling, I’d do whatever I could do to help. Not everything has to be for profit. Bike It is doing brilliant work.”
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Scott McLaughlin, with SRAM for 14 years, XX lead project engineer. Brought SRAM X.0™ rear derailleur, SRAM X.0™ trigger, SRAM Red™ and now XX™ to life.
PEOPLE AND RECRUITMENT Send your recruitment news to
Moakes makes return to Raleigh roots Ehlers in at Jim Walker Dorel adds to global team Winstanley replaces Cossins at Procycling magazine DAVID MOAKES RALEIGH UK has appointed David Moakes as its product marketing director. This appointment comes about following the resignation of Neal Holdsworth who has decided to further his career elsewhere. Raleigh would like to take this opportunity to thank Holdsworth for all his hard work in helping to re-establish Raleigh and wish him every success in the future. For Moakes, this appointment returns him to his roots at Raleigh which he left some 15 years ago. He returns with a complete knowledge of the cycle and accessory market, which he has gained from a number of appointments in the industry, latterly with Tandem Group. UK MD Mark Gouldthorp commented on the appointment: “David joins Raleigh UK as it is
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poised to further its business in what is a developing marketplace for its cycle, accessory and Cyclelife retail franchise brands.”
JACO EHLERS DISTRIBUTOR Jim Walker has promoted Jaco Ehlers to the role of product manager, handing him responsibility for the firm’s latest brand additions, including the Eddy Merckx brand. Of his business background, Ehlers told BikeBiz: “After school I started my apprenticeship with a Vauxhall dealer in 1997 and I qualified as a petrol/diesel technician in 2002. “I left South Africa during June 2002 and started working at Jim Walker by March 2003 as a warehouse assistant. “I race for the I-ride cycling team and managed to win the Serrl three-day stage race about
PEOPLE AND RECRUITMENT
People & Recruitment is Sponsored by Halfords
a month back. I also competed in the South-East Division Champs and finished 6th.” LILA CAMPBELL DOREL has appointed Lila Campbell to the role of chief human resources officer for its global recreational and leisure segment. Campbell takes on responsibility for growing talent and resource within the division, also taking a key role in the further development of ‘project one’ – the relocation of cycling sports group and building the new innovation and call centres. “I am honoured to join Dorel’s recreational and leisure segment,” Campbell said. “I am looking forward to working with an impressive group of talent and helping to expand and develop this talent base internationally.”
Campbell, who was born in Ireland, has competed competitively in cycle races in Australia. CAM WINSTANLEY FUTURE Publishing has appointed Cam Winstanley as editor of Procycling magazine. The move follows former editor Peter Cossins’ decision to launch his own bike-touring company. Cossins, who has served the magazine for ten years, will continue to contribute on a freelance basis. Winstanley first joined Future in 1993 for games magazine Amiga Power, was on the launch team for Total Film and spent many years as a freelance editor. Prior to returning, he worked on a magazine for UGC Cinema, launched a puzzle magazine for the BBC and also worked for
Rhythm, Future Music and Official Xbox Magazine. Winstanley said: “I’m really looking forward to taking Procycling on to even more success and building on the brilliant work done by the team.” Group publisher of the cycling portfolio Katherine Raderecht added: “I am very pleased to welcome Cam back to Future and would like to thank Pete for his hard work and dedication over the past ten years. Cam’s appointment aims to combine core Future magcraft principles with Procycling’s undisputed expertise about the world of competitive cycling. His passion and magazine-craft are secondto-none and I am looking forward to working with him and the Procycling team as they continue to develop an already fantastic magazine.”
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RETAIL ONLY The trade’s guide to the best customer service, up-and-coming IBDs and the hottest products
RETAIL COMMENT IF THE MET Office figures are anything to go by, summer is already underway and the UK’s cycle retailers will be making the most of the increased footfall. There’s a downside of course; we’re all stuck inside while there’s a cycling revolution going on outdoors. Time to book one of those ‘day off’ things? The word ‘revolution’ has, however, been tossed about a lot, especially in press releases coming from London’s cycle-fanatical Mayor’s office. But it’s happening, or at least it is at weekends. Check out any green space or towpatch and see if you can spot a family cycling, a group of enthusiasts heading out to a trail or a cyclist ‘walking’ the dog. So while there’s an abundance of customers, it’s safe to assume you’ll complete another year in business. Well, you might, but with flying colours?
“As you’d wipe a dusty bike down before opening, could that time be spent touching up your store’s appearance? Are your staff trained on basic sales skills? Will any sales slip because shop floor staff cannot quickly, politely and concisely respond to a question without seeming overly patronising? BikeBiz now sends a Mystery Shopper out each month to delve deeper into the trade’s good and bad habits. Perhaps as a store owner you could experiment by introducing an unknown informant on a monthly basis. With luck, the feedback will be positive, but introducing an impartial third party could also pinpoint a lack-lustre sales loser. Is your shop looking as vibrant and inviting as the weather outside? Assuming the forecasts are accurate, this is a peak time to link sun and cycles. So, how can you brighten up your store? One thing that often strikes me in bike shops is the scuffs and dents on door frames, walls and carpets. It’s unavoidable, of course, but as you’d wipe a dusty bike down, maybe it’s about time you gave your store some TLC? Perhaps one morning per week before the store opens? When you’re passionate about something it’s often far harder to let imperfections slip, that’s why as a both journalist and BMX enthusiast, this month’s sector guide was far harder to write than any other. This is a sector where the BSO is perhaps closer to being eliminated than any other. Why? Because the primary audience – 12 to 20 somethings – are suckers for trends and will avoid shoddy quality like the plague. With the bill often being footed by the parent, there’s no need to fear mid-to-high-end commitments here. Mark.firstname.lastname@example.org
IN THIS MONTH’S ISSUE DEALER PROFILE
Prolific BikeBiz.com forum poster – DocB – shares his unique angle on business below the VAT registration limit...
Proving once again to be far more than a fad, BMX is back and with the right mix of stock, is proving a real sales winner...
BikeBiz looks at a variety of cycle computers - whether a customer wants in-depth performance reports or just to see how fast they can go, there’s a bit of everything on page 53.
No frills retailing Owner: Steve Barnett Location: Lancashire Telephone: 01772 782828
Web: No web address Opening Times: 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, excluding Wednesday afternoon. 9pm to 4pm on Saturdays.
Owner of Cycling On Steve Barnett, happily confesses to being far from involved with the stresses of ’modern retail methodology’. But utilising an entirely unique business model, the biz is doing just fine... Tell us a bit about your business model: My model is a bit unusual both as regards retail in general and bike shops in particular. Wanting something to do to keep the mind active after retirement, taking on the bike shop seemed a natural thing to do. I had a vision of a business that was viable, providing income sufficient to top up a pension, but above all, one that ran with zero hassle. I set some boundaries early on. The business would be restricted to a turnover below the VAT registration limit, because I felt that I could cope with that level of business on my own without too much hassle. To make a sensible profit from that turnover meant that I had to concentrate on profitability and minimising overheads. The shop would succeed or fail on its reputation as spread by word of mouth and so I headed for the middle ground. I would not oversell anything, in particular I would not stock rubbish claiming it was good value. I would not make promises I could not keep, would have time for customers and always
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be open and honest with them. The repair side would be an important part of the business because it would bring people into the shop and is highly profitable. Fiscal control would be very tight. I do not spend money on
model stays the same and any decline in affluence has passed me by. It helps that I am in an area that is fairly wealthy and have access to a customer base that is relatively insensitive the general financial situation. Would be different if I was a volume
“Those competing on price soon get sucked into a position where it gets harder and harder to stand still.” the business unless it is absolutely necessary or is obviously going to return a profit. For example, one of my rules is never to buy anything on the shop floor. A second is always to be in a position where the bank owes me rather than I owe them. How have you prepared for a general decline in affluence? Done nothing! There's more than enough business to keep me occupied. Component price increases have meant that my charges have increased but my
shifter of 'competitively' prices bikes and kit. What forms of marketing do you practice to attract new customers? Marketing? What’s that? My total advertising budget is £15 a year for a quarter page in the carnival programme and I do that to support the community rather than attract customers. How’s business at present? Business is meeting my needs and expectations. If anything I am seeing more people who like
to be treated as individuals rather than punters, people who are tired of the big shed approach to retailing and enjoy talking to somebody who will give them time. How do you think Bike Hub’s available £100,000 could be best spent? The big block to increasing cycling uptake is that bikes have to share roads where motor vehicles take precedence in the thinking of both road designers and road users. What we need is a lot of cycle roads – dedicated routes for bikes between everyday destinations. They need to be two-way, wide enough to accommodate bikes travelling at different speeds and be pedestrian free. Bike Hub money cannot provide this, but if some of it could be used to influence thinking in this direction then maybe it would be used usefully. Do you in any way get involved with furthering cycling in the local community? I work with the Scout Association and make sure that all the local schools know that
parents can drop into the shop to have bikes checked over when cycling proficiency comes round. You refuse to discount – tell us the reasons behind this stance: Being competitive on price is not part of my business model. It’s all too easy to get sucked into a position where you cut margins to get business and then finish up working harder and harder to stand still. My route is not to stock things that are routinely discounted and when people ask me for such things I am quite happy to direct them to the discounters. When I do that, it is amazing how often I get asked to supply at the full retail price. Is anything selling particularly well at present? The store only really carries hybrids and they are selling at the level I would expect. Spec levels of bikes being sold are slowly creeping up, which is pleasing because generally, the higher the spec the happier the customer. Add to that the declining risk of post sale hassle and the business looks like a well-oiled machine.
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SECTOR GUIDE BMX
20-20 vision BMX has taken off in a big way over the past few years. Councils are now willing to invest in tracks, skate parks and facilities for the freestyler. In turn, that’s made the 20-inch bike ubiquitous. Mark Sutton looks at the products retail should not miss out on…
Fisher Outdoor Leisure ALREADY holding a firm presence in the USA and Canada, Norco now has plans to bring its BMX range to the UK to sit alongside its MTB offerings.
Zeal ZEAL has recently joined the ranks of BMX distributors offering a fixie with the signing of Focale 44. The company’s portfolio is made up of cult Scottish brand BSD, Sputnic, Superstar Components, Mankind, Standard, Alone and Focale 44. Superstar has a number of stylish products on the market, including the popular Overdrive front hub, available in black or dark green. The 6061 T6 alloy, biconic design carries a stylish die-cut star
4Down Fisher Outdoor is already making strong progress in dealer recruitment for the range, so interested dealers are advised to make contact. This year, the distributor will offer a range beginning at £279.99 and ending at £429.99. Dealer feedback has suggested that the £299.99 to £429.99 price points are expected to do well. Each model comes with a mid BB, 25/9 gearing and integrated headset. Product manager, Martin ‘Hawziee’ commented: “We’re very excited to come in to the sector in the UK with such a competitive story without having to convince dealers and consumers alike of the quality and handling of the bikes.” The bikes will be avaialble for delivery in October of this year.
4DOWN gave BikeBiz the first look at the latest Fit Chase Dehart Signature 'Tech' Series bike, the first of many 2010 completes to land with 4Down. The SRP on this model is £629.99 and it is based on the style and builds of pro riders Eddie Cleveland and Chase Dehart. Both are highly progressive street riders, who run quite unique set-ups consisting
of fatter tyres and larger bars, thus Fit has worked these into the 2010 design. 4down also handles a number of components brands including popular street inspired brand A Bike Co (known as Animal in the USA). The brand is one of a number of brands to develop skate park friendly plastic pedals, but with the added twist of making a translucent model. Visit 4downdistribution.com for more information.
logo and is carried by 3/8" / 24tpi flush bolts. The hub comes in 36-hole only and has a heat-treated female axle, which is perfectly comfortable with carrying stunt pegs. From Sputnic, the Skyline bars have taken note of the trend towards wider bars and provided two heights to cater for those looking to fine tune their front end. The Tony Neyer signature model is built from 13-butted chromoly and is heat-treated after welding for strength. Zeal is contactable on 0208 428 6107. www.zealbmx.com
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SECTOR GUIDE BMX
Source THE SOURCE bike shop in Hastings handles distribution for race brand Intense and its sister components brand Sinz. The brand has diversified this season, introducing a dirt and street suited model dubbed the Felix. Its key features include tiny 25-9 gearing, a pivotal seat and accompanying saddle, a Mid BB, Intense Micro knobbly tyres, a chrome rear wheel and colour matched forks, bars and front wheel. Sticking to its roots, one of the brand's higher end models – the Model Factory
Shiner Distribution IN ANOTHER first preview, Shiner has handed BikeBiz shots of its 2010 range, which is due to land with the distributor on June 25th. The first two models arriving will be the 2010 entry-level bikes. These will both retail below £400. The first model will be the
Series – carries a Sinz carbon fork for weight reduction. The bike carries a Podium frame, Intense's super smooth Micro Knobbly tyres, a Sinz Pro Lite stem and a slick MTN-X saddle suited to racing. French brand Twenty is also distributed by Source.
EON, which will replace Verde's 2009 Vex and is easily comparable. The 2009 Verde Vex has been one of the best selling bikes on the market, with the fastest selling colours being the black/purple and black/blue colourways. As a result, the 2010 Verde Eon bikes will be available in the same colour schemes. The second bike on this drop will be the 2010 Vex. The model has jumped up a notch, however, the price is still extremely competitive. The Vex is now sporting a slim Pivotal saddle and post combo, slightly larger bars, as well as some chromoly frame/fork upgrades. Again, Verde has introduced two new eye catching colourways. At present, Shiner only has one drop scheduled for these models before Christmas 2009, so getting stock early is recommended.
IMG Distribution IMG IS THE UK supplier for Fly Bikes, Odyssey, G-sport, Simple, Sunday, Ilegal and its house-brand Proper BikeCo, all of which are mid-tohigh-end component brands. Particularly popular among the IMG portfolio is the Proper BikeCo brand, which just as the trend for colours kicked off, began to offer the rainbow on each of its components. And the latest release is no exception. The Microlite front load stem comes in gold, black, chrome, purple, red, green, blue, orange and white and has the added advantage of being a real weight saver due to the sleek design. Also from IMG and proving a popular concept nationwide, Fly's Ruben grip, sold in singles, is
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PCM caters for a variety of markets, from adult trikes, electric toy bikes for kids, as well as a range of other pedal bikes for kids. BMX is also a big focus for the firm too, offering plenty of choice tailored to the entry-level market. The UFO Freestyler model, available in black and gold, is just one of the models on offer. The frame utilises oversize tubing and unicrown forks, while one-piece cranks power the 48-spoke alloy rims. Front and rear
Ison KHE BIKES has become established as one of the most innovative BMX companies in the market due to the amount of new technology the brand puts through prototyping. The superlight folding BMX tyres caused a stir when they were launched as they are the lightest available and are still many BMXers choice as a costeffective way to shave weight. For 2010 KHE has a diverse range of complete bikes to suit all riders and all price points. Having signed Daniel Dhers to the team, a signature range of bikes, dubbed the Machete, will soon be available. The Machete range is made up of three models – the Machete AM, LT and Pro with prices starting at £329.99 for the AM version. The AM offers fantastic value for money as it is loaded with top-quality pro-level parts such as the Exhib seat/post combo and Affix stem.
Scoop the answer to the common problem of BMX riders tearing grips to shreds in no time at all. Two lengths are available too, 135mm and 155mm, meaning a shorter grip can be selected for bars running one or two brake levers. Sunday Bikes, run by industry veteran Jim Cielinski, sponsors one of the market's most-followed riders, Aaron Ross, and as a result the brand now offers a signature model – the Funday frame. This model utilises the proven 41thermal process and as such offers a lifetime warranty against breakage. The frame features a number of fairly unique features, including built-in chain tensioners, extra cable guides and comes with a customisable sticker kit. www.imgdistribution.blogspot.com
THE LATEST product to be announced from Letchworth-based Scoop comes in the form of DK's component line-up for 2010. Among the swathes of shiny new product comes the 'golf bag', a cheeky 24-inch bike compatible, padded storage bag designed for getting bikes through airport check in without the charges. The bag comes with roller wheels and straps to hold the bike firmly in place during transportation. Sturdy carrying straps and pockets also feature. The bag, which depending on an airline’s charges, has potential to pay for itself on the first flight, weighs in at 4,800 and has stitched on the front a clever clue to the content – The 4130 flight series. All airlines allow golf clubs to be checked as a standard bag completely free
stunt pegs are included in the package, as well as a chain guard. BMX styling features in the saddle and handlebars, while V-brakes are in place front and rear for a quick stop.
KHE’s 2010 range should be available in dealers from August. Dia Compe has been busy too, claiming to have notched up top spot in the aftermarket braking sector with its Hombre callipers. Also included in the Dia Compe BMX range are proven levers, headsets and brake cables. The brand’s brake levers are becoming notably popular among fixed gear riders. Gusset is widely known among both BMX riders and mountain bikers alike and is perhaps responsible for the surge in interest in coloured tyres. The 20-inch 'Pimp' tyre led the way when pink and green tyres were launched. New products that are being released in the next few months include the Integral seat/post combo, which is available in two versions: Kevlar padded and Vinyl padded. This is a lighter and cheaper alternative to having a separate saddle and seatpost and will be a big hit with the weight-conscious customer.
of charge (or standard bag regulation fee). Additionally from DK, the Alpha sprocket is CNC machined from 6mm thick 7075 T6 aluminium and comes with a 22mm spindle bore and 19mm adapter. This means the sprocket will be compatible with the two standard axle sizes for BMX bikes. The sprocket is available in black, green, coffee or 'weird blue', new blue and gold. For dealers committed to offering a variety of add-on accessories to the BMX enthusiast, DK has also added some new alloy pegs, sold as singles in 10mm and 14mm fitments.
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SECTOR GUIDE BMX
Raleigh BIG NEWS from Diamondback: Germany's KHE has taken on the manufacturing for the brand's top five models. The result, a number of super stylish, highly upgraded models specced with some of the BMX market's best thought-out product. Until this year, Raleigh brought in Diamondback's USA range, but due to disappointing sales, decided to outsource the advanced models to Thomas and Wolfgang of KHE and the respected manufacturer's touch shines through. The bikes have been individually specced down to bar widths and heights and with great mix of top name parts and features at great price points, the graphics have also taken a massive step forward thanks to Raleigh's designer Sophie Broadley. Top of the line is the ALT, Diamondback's and KHE's first striking attempt to see
Nemesis GB THE CATLIKE 360° helmet from Nemesis GB is an all round helmet
what the partnership is capable of and with a price tag of £599.99 and a top-ofthe-line spec sheet, it's more than capable of becoming a big seller. The BMX features a full chromoly frame with integrated headset and a component list boasting an Affix Mid Bush BB set, KHE's Astral and Astern freecoaster hub, both laced to Big V and Big O rims. Then there's the inclusion of the market's lightest tyre – the Mac 2. The model is available in 20.5 only and weighs 10.2kg. The new range will be launched to the public at NASS. Shops can take stock now.
COYOTE Sport's latest Rooster catalogue, available to dealers now, contains a number of models for stores looking to cater for the low to mid end of the market. Coyote's Big Daddy will go down a treat with old schoolers looking to offer their kids a taste of BMX. It features classic Skyway Mag wheels adorned upon a tig welded Hi-tensile park-suited frame. The gearing ratio of 18/44 is powered by a one-piece crank. Four stunt pegs are included with this model, as with many other within the Coyote catalogue. The magwheeled Big Daddy costs £175 at retail, while a spoked version is available at just £135.55. Coyote also offers the Piranha range
Seventies designed for BMX, skate and freeride enthusiasts. The 360°, with its new urban design, is ideal for street, dirt or riding ramps. With a rounded and compact shape, coupled with its light weight, this is an ideal stock choice for those looking for a reliable, yet styled helmet. 14 vents feature for maximum cooling, while the internal padding can be personalised by the buyer. One size is available, catering for head sizes ranging from 54 to 58cm. The 360° costs £29.99 at retail and comes in sand, white and black.
Reece Cycles THE STEED that took Kyle Bennett to the Beijing Olympic games, the Free Agent Team Limo is now available from Reece Cycles. The bike is constructed to meet UCI race regulations and is built around a 6061 aluminium frame. A hydroformed down tube, CNC machined dropouts and square chainstays add to the styled looks and streamlined design, as does the Free Agent bladed fork. The wheels are made up of Sun Rhyno Lite doublewall rims built onto sealed bearing hubs, of which the rear carries a 16 tooth cassette. Of the brand's dirt jump-suited offerings, the Devil 24-inch is a slightly larger version of the brand's BMX bikes. This build features a full CrMo frame (mid bb) and fork, Weinmann black alloy doublewall rims, Free Agent's own 14mm flip flop
OFFERING dealers a wealth of perks such as high stock levels, competitive pricing, high margins, catalogue support and flexible payment terms, Seventies is seeing a big uplift in store sign up. Carrying well-known brand names such as Federal, Kink, Hoffman bikes, Subrosa, Macneil and Primo to name just a few, the
distributor offers components, completes, clothing and spares for most items. Of the very latest product to be announced, house brand Federal has launched a new frame dubbed the Twilight. Quick and low, the Twilight has
of BMX bikes, including 22 and 24inch wheeled models. Featuring classic Mag wheels, the Piranha 300 carries three-piece cranks, two stunt pegs and a padded saddle. To discuss what Coyote can do for your store, contact 0161 727 8508.
everything the technical street rider could ask for. A super steep headtube angle of 75.5 and short rear end make this frame both responsive and agile. With all the features and quality you’ve come to expect from a Federal frame, this is perfect for the new
school rider looking to switch things up a bit. Weighing in at 4 ½ lb and available in black and 'flat gold', it's just one of the stylish frames within the distributor's portfolio. The brand has also announced a new Twilight fork, which has again shaved weight with no compromise, utilising a new manufacturing technique to produce hollow dropouts.
Faction Bike Co
alloy hubs and a three-piece crank. Reece Cycles is contactable on 0121 622 0180.
THE ZEITGEIST 22-inch wheel complete bike is now beginning to perform sales-wise in both the UK and in the US, according to Stylus, the UK distributor. The model claims to be the world's first high performance freestyle bike with 22-inch wheels and was designed to be an all-rounder as it had to prove the 22-inch wheel concept could work in all aspects of BMX riding. Stylus also has a whole range of new 22-inch wheels, tyres, frames and complete bikes in development this year, each designed to focus more on either street, park, trails or BMX racing. Dealer enquires should be directed to www.factionbikeco.com or email@example.com.
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SECTOR GUIDE BMX
Dawes LAUNCHED just last year, Dirty Bikes targets the competively priced freestyle market. All models are kitted out with tough 6mm dropouts, machined head tubes, detangler headsets and stunt pegs, along with all the key features for anyone
looking to start out in the world of BMX. The range opens up with the Ripper, which uses a shorter 19.5-inch top tube suitable for younger riders and retails at £199.99. The Grease Monkey (£239.99) has a full length 20.5-inch top tube, chromoly down tube, three-piece chromoly cranks, 14mm axles, 36T x 14T drivetrain with K-Rad tyres.
Hot Wheels HOT WHEELS carries a number of BMX brands including complete bikes from GT and Mongoose, said to be the UK's best selling complete BMX brands. Then there's WeThePeople, the distributor's popular mid-to-high-end brand, which last year launched a sister components brand dubbed Eclat, also distributed via Hot Wheels. Four BMX-specific component brands are available from the Poole-based distributor – Exposure, Snafu, Eclat and Salt (also a division of WeThePeople) GT Bikes has progressed its models for 2010, with designers focusing on the aesthetic appeal, as well as the spec sheets. The GT Fly comes in two colour
Madison THE VERSATILE Bell Faction helmet offers style, fit and comfort for a pocket-money friendly £24.99. Old school styling and dual certification, make the Faction perfect for bicycle or skate use, while the dual-density EPS foam makes for a low-profile fit. And for those junior riders who don’t want to miss out on the protection and style the Faction has to offer Bell now also offer the ‘Fraction’... you guessed it a smaller sized version of the Faction.
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PREDOMINANTLY a Wigan-based BMX specialist and mail order outlet, Alans BMX also exclusively distributes a number of brands. These include Australian brand Colony, for which Alans brings in the entire components range. Business owner Alan Woods said: "We have been importing Colony since last July and it has grown month on month since then. We have more dealers coming on board all the time and do plan to expand our distribution side of the business in future." The store also handles a number of race brands available to the trade. These include Supercross BMX, Avent and Bombshell and
combinations – white/blue/pink or purple/yellow/green. This model comes specced with tubular three-piece cranks with a sealed mid BB, running 25T/9T gearing. The wheels are 36 hole, while the drivetrain runs via a nine-tooth built onto a 14mm rear cassette wheel and a 10mm 32-hole front wheel with Kenda K-Rad and Konoxsion Tyres. Mongoose's high-end offering for 2010 is the Chamber, a 25/9 geared, full cromoly frame with an integrated headset and sealed mid BB. Mongoose's own aftermarket pivotal saddle and Ultralight stem feature too, as do tyres from Snafu and a sealed three-piece crank. WeThePeople's 2010 line-up has taken plenty of notes on the trends emerging across BMX street, park and dirt. Larger
Tangent Racing's line up, which consists of number plates, grips, bars and more. Specialist-made Knight BMX components are also available for order via Alans at trade price. The USA-made brand manufactures bars, bar ends, grips, chain tensioners, braking equipment, hub guards, stems, sprockets and a number of collectable retro BMX items.
tyres, integrated headsets, seatclamps, wider bars and frames offering removable brake mounts feature among the range. The top-selling Envy returns alongside the Justice and Versus models and each boasts weights of 25lb or below, with the Envy hitting a top-end 22.4lb. The model's super-low weight is attributed to the range of aftermarket items chosen to give the rider a customised feel. Top-end Eclat components such as the two-piece Tibia crank and Bondi rims feature, as does the brand's new saddle, U-brake and lever.
Chicken Cyclekit IF YOUR customer is seeking a coloured chain to match their custom build, then Chicken Cyclekit can supply KMC's K710SL and Z410 1/8 chains. The £29.99 retail, 100 link K710SL features an extra stretchproof mushroomed pin design which enhances durability. What's more it's superlight and has an anti-drop design, slotted plates and hollow pins. Alternatively, for £7.99 the KMC Z410 1/8 provides a snap-on connector for ease of installation and has a tensile strength of 920kgf. The model is also compatible with three-speed set ups.
SECTOR GUIDE BMX
Split Second Imports
BLANK IS a BMX brand owned and developed by Rob Hill and the team at Split Second Imports in Cheddar, Somerset. Featuring complete bikes and a vast array of mid-priced parts and accessories, the brandâ€™s philosophy is to provide quality products at affordable prices, particularly in the after-market parts and accessories market. 20-inch riders buy parts for several reasons: replacement for an existing damaged part, change of colour, lessen the weight, improved spec and quality, or just because they prefer the look of something. In each case, Blank can offer
high-quality choices at reasonable prices. One of the most popular after-market items in the world of BMX is the chainwheel, as the trend is for people to lower their gearing (the most popular now being a 25/9 ratio). As such, the sprocket is often the first part to be upgraded after the purchase of a complete bike. Blank chainwheels are available in black, white, red, blue and a limited edition lime, in 25/28/30-tooth sizes. More importantly, they feature 23.8mm centre-holes, which means they can be used on bikes with one-piece cranks, unlike most chainwheels, which have a 22mm hole. They come with an adaptor depending on the size of crank axle, and at ÂŁ27.99, is one of the market's best value offerings.
Contacts: Dawes 0121-7488050 www.dirty-bikes.com
Hot Wheels 01202 732288 www.hot-wheels.co.uk
IMG 01243 268075 www.imgdistribution.blogspot.com
Fisher Outdoor 01727 798345 www.fisheroutdoor.co.uk
Zeal 0208 428 6107 www.zealbmx.com
Chicken Cyclekit 01525 381 347 www.chickencycles.co.uk
Source BMX 01424 460943 www.sourcebmx.co.uk
Avocet Sports 0161 727 8608 www.avocetsports.com
Scoop 01462 650741 www.scoopbmx.com
4Down 01424 433 074 www.4downdistribution.com
Shiner 01179 556035 www.shiner-distribution.co.uk
Split Second Imports 01934 743888 firstname.lastname@example.org
Seventies 0845 3103670 www.seventies.co.uk
Dawes 0121 748 8050 www.dawescycles.com
Raleigh 01773 532600 www.raleigh.co.uk
Alans BMX 01942 826598 www.alansbmx.com
Reece Cycles 0121 622 0180 www.reececycles.co.uk
Faction 07794 144651 www.factionbikeco.com
Madison 0208 385 3385 www.madisonb2b.co.uk
Nemesis 0870 777 5530 www.nemesisgb.com
Ison 01223 213800 www.ison-distribution.com
PCM 01268 574040 www.professionalcycles.co.uk
BIKEBIZ JULY 51
LEADING THE TRENDS 09 The world’s leading trade fair and business platform for bicycles, equipment, clothing, travel and more.
September 2 – 5, 2009 We-Fr Sa
8.30 a.m. – 6.30 p.m. 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
SECTOR GUIDE CYCLE COMPUTERS
Speed check For fitness fanatics and serious cyclists, cycle computers have long been essential kit, and with ever more clever technology these smart products are capable of a lot more than just keeping track of how fast you’re travelling. Jonathon Harker plugs in to take a look at the latest the sector has to offer UK retail and consumers from the key distributors and manufacturers in the field…
Zyro ZYRO OFFERS a huge range of cycle computers from the CatEye brand, including the Micro Mini – a computer boasting 10 functions, 12 features and a backlight, all for £39.99. One of the best allrounders is the Strada Wireless Cadence. At £69.99 it features a Click-Tec one touch screen, single speed/cadence and a compact head unit. At the premium end of the range is the V3 sports 2.4 GHz digital technology, covering speed, cadence and heart rate with zero interference.
Fisher Outdoor Leisure FISHER OFFERS the VDO range, including the new X series, featuring bigger displays, larger numbers with the cadence permanently displayed. Five models make up the series including the X1, boasting 11 functions (wired RRP £24.99, wireless RRP £44.99) and 16 function X2, priced at £29.99 for the wired version and £49.99 for the wireless version. Both the X1 and X2 include average, actual and maximum
Boasting fast precise data and multi-lap functions, the V3 retails at £124.99. At the other end of the market, the Velo-5 is simple-to-use and easy-to-set-up, making it a perfect starter product at £14.99. Elsewhere the Micro Wireless Black features a big easy read screen with no wires to get caught in forks, retailing at £39.99. Other products include the Strada Wireless Red – a limited edition, 8-function device retailing at £44.99, while the wired Velo-8 is a sophisticated eight-function computer with simple set-up and easy touch button operation, priced at £19.99.
speed, odometer, comparison to actual speed, trip distance and much more. Finally, the wireless X3, (RRP £54.99) features a whopping 22 functions. Also from VDO the high-end Z3 is a serious piece of kit priced at £279.99. It includes plenty of bang for your buck, including a wireless PC link, an altimeter and 100 hours storage capacity. For more details contact Fisher.
Moore Large KNOG’S N.E.R.D. computers come in two models – featuring nine and 12 functions respectively – and three colours – black, white and red. Both types easily wrap around the bar and fork, and include a range of features, including trip distance, total riding time, current speed, maximum speed and much more. The higher end product also includes scanning, measures distance per day, a display backlight and more. N.E.R.D. retails at £53.99 for the nine-function and £59.99 for the 12-function versions. Aside from Knog’s offerings, Moore Large also stocks its ETC brand range –
Madison AS WELL as supplying the sector’s most famous products from Garmin, including the Edge 705 (from £369.99 SRP), Madison also supplies the Blackburn Neuro 4.0. This robust and reliable wireless 2.4 Ghz data transmission system provides interference-free speed and cadence with good battery life. Squeezed full of serious training tools and boasting
all boasting automatic start/stop and power on/off, resin protected sensor and bracket, and two rows of LCD display, amongst other handy features. The range includes the Alfa wireless eight-function, (£27.99 RRP), the Mach-1, 2 and 3 (RRPs ranging from £9.99 to £13.99), and the 22-function Nine-0, retailing at £17.99 and available in black, red and white. Moore Large also stocks the Sigma Cycle Computer range.
a large, easy to read (and back-lit) display, the Neuro 4.0 has an SRP of £109.99 and comes complete with the Blackburn ‘no quibble’ lifetime warranty. Madison also offers the Pro SX-4X seven-function computer, priced at £44.99 (SRP). Featuring all the essential basics, the SX-4X includes a sleek low profile bracket that can be stem or handlebar mounted. Sporting simple onebutton operation, it comes in black/silver, or white/silver.
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SECTOR GUIDE CYCLE COMPUTERS
Chicken Cyclekit CHICKEN STOCKS a range of Velomann cycle computers, all of which come with a three-year warranty. First up is the seven-
View Ranger VIEW RANGER offers a location tool that can be used directly with mobile phones. Providing mapping, navigation, tracking and information, Nokia or Symbian S60 smartphones can become trail navigation systems with the product. The packages are available on CD or memory card and include clear and detailed maps, determine velocity and direction via the use of GPS, and provide unique panoramic viewpoint maps to assist with navigation. Waypoints and points of interest can be set, and ‘Tripview’ can be customised to monitor
Cannondale OFFERING simple set-up and easy-to-read screens Cannondale supplies a variety of computers for cycling, ranging from the wireless IQ 118 (priced at £30) to the IG108 (priced at £17). The 118 hosts 18functions, including speed indicator, trip distance and time, backlighting, bar and stem mounting and heavy-duty wire features. The 118 is easy to calibrate, is programmable and includes auto start/shut off. The IQ108 carries many of the same features, including speed measuring facilities, trip distance and time meters, as well as being multi-language and featuring the all important easy-to-read screen. The
Raleigh RALEIGH offers the RSP Computers range, catering for novices and the experienced, featuring wireless and advanced features in the range. The super-slim SL-18C boasts 18 functions and is priced at £27.99 RRP.
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function computer. Priced at £22.99, it measures current speed, average speed, comparisons, trip time and distance, features an odometer and carries a 12/24hr clock function. Crucially, the device is wireless and boasts a handy autostart facility. For a more sophisticated range of features, Chicken also supplies Velomann’s 31-function computer. Including all of the features of the seven-function, it also measures heart rate (average and maximum), altitude (current, maximum and average), cadency (average and maximum), temperature and carries plenty of additional features. The 31-function computer, which also includes PC link up, retails at £149.99.
key information while on the move. A review function allows users to look over records of trips – an especially handy feature for cyclists and runners interested in training or simply tracking their latest journeys. Naturally View Ranger is ideal for a variety of outdoor pursuits including cycling, walking and even horse riding and for those travelling by boat. To find out more about the range visit viewranger.com.
firm also stocks the Lefty Computer Mount which, as the name suggests, can be used to quickly and easily mount a computer sensor to a Lefty fork, and comes priced at a modest £8.
Garmin ONE OF the biggest names in the sector, Garmin naturally has a huge range of cycle computers on offer for retailers. Amongst the latest on offer is the Edge 705 which allows users to design workouts based on time, distance, calories or heart rate. It also allows users to exchange tracks wirelessly with other Garmin Edge users and even to overlay multiple tracks on the Edge map, with each track colour-
Cardiosport CARDIOSPORTS’ newly launched Unique Combi range of heart rate monitors are ideal for cyclists and non-cyclists alike, fitting the consumer in a watch-style. The heart monitors feature safe 122 kHz low frequency digital transmission with coding so exercise can take place in close proximity to other monitors. The whole range also features the patented Cardio Zone alarm system which allows the user to set a target zone during exercising while also coming complete with a memory to review session data. The C2 and C3 have additional features that help users concentrate on fat
coded to provide easy on-screen identification. The firm also offers the Oregon 300 and Garmin GB Discoverer bundle. When combined with a bike mount the package provides a GPS system with the ease of touchscreen – ideal for road, off-road and adventure cyclists. That touchscreen boasts a resilient waterproof design that is still highly responsive to the touch. The GB Discoverer 1:50 National Parks microSD card comes included in the bundle, providing highly detailed mapping from the Ordnance Survey.
burning and automatic heart recovery. Other features shared across the range include an ECG accurate heart rate, water resistance up to 30 meters (or 60 feet) and a user changeable battery in the chest transmitter – saving cash and the environment simultaneously.
Giant GIANT IS to add to its cycle computer line-up with five new models forming the new Axact line. The PRO+ is the range topping wireless model boasting an array of features, while other models include the Axact Pro, the Axact 13W available in two colours, Axact 11 and Axact 9. They will be available in addition to Giant's Continuum models.
Contacts: Zyro: 01845 521700 www.zyro.co.uk Fisher: 01727 798345 www.fisheroutdoor.co.uk The robust and powerful HRM-22 boasts 22 functions and a heart rate monitor. Priced at £39.99 RRP, the HRM-12 packs clever features, including an auto save function, into the package. Aside from RSP, Raleigh has its own range of high quality, waterproof, sturdy and reliable ARC computers, ranging from £9.99 to £27.99 RRP.
Moore Large: 01332 274200 www.moorelarge.co.uk Madison: 0208 385 3385 www.madisonb2b.co.uk
View Ranger: email@example.com www.viewranger.com Cardiosport: 023 9225 7388 www.cardiosport.com Cannondale : 02380 391 9267 www.cannondale.com Raleigh: 01773 532600 www.raleigh.co.uk
Chicken Cyclekit: 01525 381347 www.chickencycle.co.uk
Giant: 0115 9775900 www.giant-bicycles.com
: 0208 385 3385 (Madison) 01752 241010 (SM Group) (Via Madison and SM Group)
BIKEBIZ APRIL 39
56 BIKEBIZ JULY
This month BIkeBiz gets Comfy before taking a look at the latest eagerly awaited kit from SRAM...
RockShox Fisher Outdoor 01727 798345
Sugoi ‘09 firstname.lastname@example.org 00800.4321.3350
Wildoo Drinking Straw Bottle Wildoo 0870 977 1550
THE LONG-established SID World Cup fork is back with significant upgrades this season and claims to have shed 110 grams. The crown and steerer has evolved to a hollow one-piece carbon fibre composition and the fork lowers are now full magnesium compared to the magnesium and carbon fibre combo found in the 2009 version. The changes cut the overall weight, bringing the fork with full steerer in at 1,400 grams, maintaining the incredible steering precision it’s famous for. The updated carbon crown and steerer add strength and stiffness and more than meet tough CEN standards.
THE FALL '09 Sugoi collection is designed to better service athletes’ needs by moving excess heat and moisture away from the body and balancing the core temperature. For this reason, the brand has announced a new layering system, the SUGOI Comfort System (SCS), as well as the new first layer fabric FinoCarbon. Sugoi’s back-to-basics approach has seen a new integrated layering system – the Sugoi Comfort System – that provides an optimal body climate. FinoCarbon combines moisture management and thermal insulation with an outstanding soft touch.
EU-BOTTLE now offers a new drinking straw pulling spout for its sports bottles range. Most traditional drinking straw bottles are based on a plastic beaker with a snap-on cap, which must be kept upright so that they do not leak. In the closed position the new straw is sealed and the bottle will not leak. The straw is made from the same soft, flexible thermoplastic rubber as the existing standard pulling spout, which for many years has been a major selling feature of the bottles. The new straw fits the existing caps so that it can be supplied with any of the current range of bottles.
Magnum Locks and Kids’ Comfy Oxford Products 01993 862300
SRAM XX Fisher Outdoor 01727 798345
Oxford Products latest 'Magnum' U locks are tested to Gold Sold Secure standards and the internal locking mechanism offers two secure mechanisms. The locks are pick resistant too, so thieves will need access to either of the two keys supplied. The keyhole is also grime resistant with a dust cover. A £1,000 anti-theft guarantee is included with the OF173. Also new from Oxford this month, the Comfy range of neck warmers – which can double up as pretty much any form of headgear – has expanded, offering kids sizes. For boys, there's the Little Devil Comfy and for girls, the Little Madam.
THE MUCH-HYPED XX groupset is special because it’s the first time the SRAM Group has brought together its component arms – RockShox, Truvativ, Avid and SRAM – to create an entire mountain bike groupset. The groupset targets cross-country enthusiasts, utilising a two-ring crankset linked with a ten-speed cassette. Both a press fit GXP and BB30 bottom bracket will be available to buyers. The entire package will set a customer back around £1,525 and weighs in below 2,300 grams, a full 300 grams lighter than Shimano's equivalent offering, the XTR M970. The ten-speed cassette is perhaps the biggest highlight of the new group, weighing in at an astonishing 208 grams, mostly due to the heavy milling on each cog. The Avid XX brakes carry a new magnesium calliper and stainless steel rotor, although they share many features with the existing Elixer brakeset. The weights and prices do not include the RockShox XX fork, however, as this is an optional extra. An XLoc remote lockout features on the race inspired 80/100mm fork. And the groupset has already got off to a flying start; Julien Absalon won the Madrid World Cup using XX at the end of May, marking the first World Cup victory for the new package.
BIKEBIZ JULY 57
This month BikeBiz finds how many millions have been dedicated to cycling in London and looks at the contrasting fortunes of bike retail, while also uncovering the level of financial backing Taiwan is giving to boost electric bikes and the worrying attitudes of the public to texting while driving...
The age at which Austrian cyclist Bernhard Kohl admitted to beginning blood doping. He has now retired following the revelation, aged 27.
19 £7 million 545,000 (Source: Various)
The operating loss JJB Sports posted for the 52 weeks to January 25th 2009. The firm stated that it came 'dangerously close’ to insolvency, despite racking up £34.3 million in the previous year. (Source: TheRetailBulletin.com)
4.4% The increase in retail footfall in April 2009, compared with April 2008. (Source: The Retail Bulletin)
30.8% Figure by which bicycle imports to the USA have declined year-onyear, equating to 1.1 million fewer bikes arriving. For the past few years, America has averaged about $6 billion worth of bicycles, clothing and accessories sales. (Source: Bike-eu.com and bikesbelong.org)
trips are made daily by bicycle in London and to cope with this, a record £111 million has been set aside to fund infrastructure and parking improvements in the capital. (Source: TfL)
NT $3,000 The figure the Environmental Protection Agency, under the Taiwan Cabinet, will subsidise electric bike purchases until November 30th 2010. (Source: CENS.com)
The number of people the first instalment of BikeRadar Live drew across the two-day event. (Source: Future Publishing)
53% of people rate talking on the phone while driving as socially unacceptable as drink driving, according to surveys by the AA. Yet 55 per cent say they are tempted to answer the phone while driving, despite acknowledging the risk it presents to other road users.
HAPPY GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY SINGLETRACK 50th: Issue of Singletrack has just hit shelves nationwide 15: Years Chipps Chippendale has been a full time bike journo £10,000: The total combined wage bill for the three staff for the first year of Singletrack. 9: Number of staffers at Singletrack now 48: Number of single, odd bike industry socks Chipps found when pairing up his 200 pairs. 3: Different front covers that Singletrack prints - one for bike shops and subscribers, one for the newstrade and one for WHSmiths. 2001 - Year Singletrack Mag and website launched
(Source: The AA) BIKEBIZ.COM
BIKEBIZ JULY 59
GREEN PROFILE: Pedalite Can you give us some background to Pedalite? Pedalite International is a UK company that designs, manufactures and distributes unique, award-winning, batteryfree safety lighting for cyclists, hikers, runners, equestrians and people involved in a variety of outdoor activities. Can you tell us about your product range? Pedalite’s products are all designed to improve cycling safety because they provide vital side lighting, ensuring cyclists can be seen by motorists any time, day or night. According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents three quarters of cycling accidents happen at road junctions where cyclists need to be seen from the side. Pedalite’s award-winning, battery-free lighting includes its 360 degree pedal lights, solar powered Baglite, which fits any
size or shape of backpack and the ultra lightweight Anklelite. It illuminates ankles or arms, provides 360 degree lighting so cyclists can be seen from every angle, including the side and from up to one km away. The pedal lights are uniquely powered using kinetic energy (un-noticeable to the cyclist) and the lights come on as soon as the cyclist starts pedalling. The pedals harvest and store a small amount of energy from the bicycle which allow the lights to flash for up to five minutes when the cyclist is freewheeling or has stopped at a road junction. Anklelite also doubles as a trouser clip replacement for cyclists and provides 360 degree lighting for cyclists riding with clipless and other pedal types. Can you explain how your products are green? All our products are environmentally friendly
through the efficient use of renewable energy sources and the elimination of batteries or the need to ‘recharge’ from the mains. Even the packaging is recycled cardboard and not plastic ‘clamshells’ or similar. Why should retailers stock your products? Our products are innovative, unique and have proved a hit with consumers worldwide. Pedalite’s best selling range of products appeal to people on a practical level, are considered good value because they eliminate the cost of batteries, improve safety, are reliable, stylish and of course green. Pedalite has also timed a major PR campaign in the UK for the July to October timeframe to help drive customers into bike shops to look for Pedalite products. Will you be creating any more green products?
Pedalite is continually adding to our range of battery-free safety products. Although the Anklelite is already used by many customers as an Armlite, a special version will be available later in the year for use primarily on the arm. The range is then being planned for further extension thereafter.
“Our products are reliable, popular, stylish and of course, green.”
Contact: Pedalite International, Hamilton House, 111 Marlowes Hemel Hempstead HERTS, HP1 1BB t: 01442 450 483 f: 01442 450 335 email: www.pedalite.com
SEPTEMBER 2009 Children’s Bikes and Accessories Cycle Show Preview Editorial Deadline: Aug 10th Advertising Deadline: Aug 12th
OCTOBER 2009 Clothing and Accessories Cycle Show (extra circulation) Editorial Deadline: Sept 8th Advertising Deadline: Sept 10th
NOVEMBER 2009 Stocking Fillers Trailers and Trailer Bikes Cycle Show Review Editorial Deadline: Oct 19th Advertising Deadline: Oct 21st
DECEMBER 2009 Core Bike Preview Tyres, Wheels and Pumps Editorial Deadline: Nov 16th Advertising Deadline: Nov 18th
Core Bike Customisation Oils, Cleaners and Tools Editorial Deadline: TBC Advertising Deadline: TBC
BICYCLE LIGHTING BICYCLE CARRIER RACKS
Editorial Deadline: July 13th 2009
Advertising Deadline: July 15th 2009
To advertise call Carly Bailey on +44 (0) 1992 535647, or email her at email@example.com For editorial contact Jonathon Harker on +44 (0) 1992 535646, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
60 BIKEBIZ JULY
IceBike Helmets Frames, Forks and Gears Core Bike Review Editorial Deadline: TBC Advertising Deadline: TBC
MARCH 2010 Media and Magazine Analysis Electric Bikes Folding Bikes Editorial Deadline: TBC Advertising Deadline: TBC
APRIL 2010 Bike Security Parts and Accessories Ice Bike Review Editorial Deadline: TBC Advertising Deadline: TBC BIKEBIZ.COM
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The BikeBiz Marketplace offers a complete marketing package of print, online and editorial visibility, allowing companies the opportunity to maintain contact with readers each month without the associated cost of full display advertising. The BikeBiz Marketplace, and its associated online version, has been designed to offer readers a directory of all products and services in the bike trade.
The standard package includes: A quarter page advert in each issue Regular editorial coverage in the dedicated column Company details listed in the online directory with web link Company details listed in the BikeBiz Marketplace Contacts To get your company featured here contact: Carly Bailey on 01992 535647 or
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LIGHTING BMX PARTS AND ACCESSORIES Seventies
0845 310 3670
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CLOTHING AND ACCESSORIES Buff
01707 852 244
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01772 459 887
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07789 075 818
The Cycle Division
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RESPRAYS & REPAIRS Argos TRAINING SERVICES The Bike Doctor WATER BOTTLES
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WEBSITE SERVICES FOLDING BIKES Montague
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COMPANY PROFILE TERRI OSBORNE, OWNER Squirt
TEL: 07789 075818 WEB: www.in2dust.co.uk
Tell us what in2dust can offer retailers: In2dust is me, Terri Osborne with some outsourced warehousing and the team that provides. I guess that makes me unusual to be a female in what is a male driven industry. Currently I import Squirt Chainlube from South Africa into the UK.
Do you have any plans for expansion? There have been offers, but It's important for in2dust to establish itself in the UK marketplace with Squirt Chainlube. Once dealers become familiar with us and our service we aim to increase our portfolio.
You’ve got backing from two MTB big names – how did this come about? Ned Overend and Travis Brown were given samples to try and they loved the product. We don't pay them to endorse the product, they decide to use it and of course Squirt sends them chainlube.
Was Squirt developed exclusively for bikes, or does it have other uses? Only bicycles and although there's a number of applications it can be used for, chains are where it's happiest.
How is your product performing in other territories? In South Africa, the home of Squirt, it’s been around since 2003 and is hugely popular. In America and Australia sales are enormous and growing each year. In Europe there are a number of distributors and in the UK it's been really impossible to find until now. Now we’re here, our aim is to support retail outlets countrywide with attractive margins, free next day delivery, no minimum orders and terms.
What events does Squirt plan to attend this year? We are a sponsor of the Merida Marathon series where we have a lubing station under our gazebo offering free lube, jelly babies, trail mix and, if the weather is anything like round two last time around, shelter from the rain. We are the vets solo category sponsor for the Trans Wales, so again attending all seven days as a lubing station. By the time this edition hits doormats we would have been to SSUK09 handing out prizes and are hugely looking forward to the Brighton Big Dog in August, where we are also giving away prizes.
I ride and I think it's hugely important to support these events. We will also be at the Earl's Court Cycle Show. We assist a number of UK athletes and will turn up from time to time at events offering support. What environmental credentials does the product carry? Being a wax/water emulsion, Squirt is the only dry lube that does not contain a solvent, and as a result is more environmentally friendly than others. Squirt has also been proven to exceed maximum biodegradablility criteria and breaks down 80 per cent in 28 days, 25 per cent better than the required limit. Squirt is 100 per cent biodegraded in 58 days. How can dealers get in touch? Via phone or via the email form on our site. Interested dealers may request samples and we will happily dispatch these. Read our reviews section on the site, in particular the piece with the Hub in Glentress which runs its entire hire fleet of 120 plus bikes exclusively on Squirt because they are saving money by doing so.
“The Hub in Glentress runs an 120 strong fleet on Squirt because they are saving money doing so...” Terri Osborne
BIKEBIZ JULY 67
BikeBiz is keen to publish your opinions, whether they’re from letters, emails or via BikeBiz.com... Mail to: Saxon House, 6A St. Andrews Street, Hertford, Hertfordshire, SG14 1JA
Email: jonathon.harker@ intentmedia.co.uk
Underhand STAR LETTER
Maternal instinct MATERNITY Worldwide is a Brighton-based charity that aims to help improve conditions for mothers and children in Africa. For the last four years we have raised funds through a sponsored annual bike ride in Ethiopia, where we do much of our work. We are now looking for enthusiastic cyclists to be a part of this year’s ride, held from Friday October 30th to Friday November 13th. The bike ride is an amazing experience, cycling through Ethiopia’s beautiful landscape of farmland, forest and mountains. We will travel 320 kilometres (just under 200 miles) from the capital, Addis Ababa, to Gimbie where our main projects are based. Once in Gimbie, participants will have the unique opportunity to visit an important maternal health clinic and see first hand how the money they’ve raised will save lives.
Maternal health is a critical issue in the developing world. In England childbirth is normally controlled and safe, but in Ethiopia it’s life threatening. In some parts, one in seven women die during childbirth, and complications that aren’t fatal can result in serious injuries to mother and child. By participating in our bike ride your readers will be making a genuine difference by helping bring stability to African families. The bike ride will be fully supported by experienced staff to ensure safety, and it won’t be fast paced so you don’t have to be super-fit to take part. For more information please call us on 01273 682241, email us at bikeride@maternityworldwide. org, or visit our website at www.maternityworldwide.org James Watson, Maternity Worldwide
Star Letter Whether it’s a hand-written, sent-throughthe-post letter, email or a comment made on the BikeBiz forum, the best letter of the month wins a prize from Oxford Products. This month the lucky winner will bag a full set of luggage from Oxford Products, including front and rear panniers, bar and wedge bags.
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PLEASE FIND herewithin (pictured) one of two recent items I have seen in the Daily Express epitomising the deceit and misleading ways in which the ‘Big Boys’ distort prices, in order to convince the unsuspecting customer that the prices of bikes have been “slashed by 50 per cent”. This really is misleading, as the children’s bikes portrayed are probably only worth the ‘reduced’ price anyway! Plus the fact that bicycles are still being shown as being amongst the ‘Toys and Games’ category just shows how serious cycling is portrayed in
Britain does it not? Mick Brown, Mick Brown Cycles, Nottingham
Are some retailers guilty of distorting prices and downgrading bikes?
From the Forum... IBD or not IBD? That’s the question... JUST READ about Saracen being an ’IBD’ only brand. I think the term IBD came about long before ’super multiple’ IBDs and before IBDs started significant online sales. So is it time we came up with some new names? I consider myself an IBD as I’m a stand-alone store with little online presence, but I would not put myself in the same category of retailer as a chain of IBDs, for example. So how about adding a new name into the mix, the MIBD (pro: mibdy)? IBD (me and some of you) MIBD (multiple outlet IBD) Multiple or Mass (Halfords, Toys R US) Online (Wiggle) Clive0 I HATE the term IBD and generally believe it is one
created by suppliers to categorise their channels of distribution. Personally I think good cycle shops are a lot more than simply ‘dealers’. About two years ago I proposed ‘Specialist Cycle Retailer’ – and here at ACT we have been using that term ever since. We actually polled our members on various options and SCR came out on top. See below. As for the other names I think multiples / mass market and online covers it. Poll: Is the term ‘IBD’ outdated and is there a better way to describe our retail channel? Yes = 88 per cent No = 12 per cent Top three alternative terms: 1. Specialist Cycle Retailer = 43 per cent 2. Local Bike Shop = 13 per cent 3. Independent Cycle Retailer =
8 per cent Mark Brown, ACT LBS IS MUCH better. It’s what the punters call us, so why not adopt it for ourselves? gearfreak HOW about ‘Bicycle shop’? 604xt I KINDA like IBD as it’s been around so long, I just think I’m so different from some businesses that we still refer to as IBDs that the Mibdy tag was a good one. If IBDs are all banded together for a common cause then we do need a new name for some of the bigger multiples whose sales strategies on premium products are more a threat to the everyday business of IBDs than Halfords ever was... Clive0
OFF THE RECORD
OFF THE RECORD
Send your pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org
Tour de Prison
Knogumentaries take web by storm KNOG is up to its entertaining shenanigans again, this time targeting the ‘bored-at-work’ cycle enthusiast with a series of Knogumentaries. The downloadable series follows a number of fictional characters as they
fall in love with various Knog related items, and each other… Each promotional video highlights a product and concludes with a quick spec run down. The series can be viewed at knog.com.au /knogumentary.
FRENCH inmates from Lille Prison have taken part in the first ever ‘Penal Tour de France’. Nearly 200 prisoners were escorted by 124 prison guards and officials on the trip, covering over 1,500 miles from Lille to the capital, Paris. Strict guidelines were in place ahead of the race and prisoners were warned that breakaway sprints would be aggressively chased down by supervisors. Only those serving between five and ten years toured the 17 towns, all of which feature prisons. “It’s a kind of escape for us, a chance to break away from the daily reality of prison life,” said a prisoner identified only as Daniel. According to Reuters, prison official Sylvie Marion said the project aims to “help inmates foster values like teamwork and self-esteem. “We want to show them that with some training you can start a new life.”
Battered and bruised BIKEBIZ'S sister title, Mobile Entertainment, has suffered a staff casualty. Executive editor Tim Green took a fall in Regents Park when his Saracen Hybrid took a dive down a pothole. Pictured is the resulting damage. BikeBiz is now asking (perhaps inadvisably) whether you can show up Green’s battle scar? The crash resulted in a skinned palm, elbow and a man-sized stomach bruise, as well as a bent fork.
A sore Green commented: “Amazingly it was a busy road, but I didn’t get run over, nor break anything. Kindly, a white van man stopped, lent me his first aid kit and even offered to take me to hospital.” When asked how he intends to dodge potholes in future, Green commented: “44-year-olds shouldn’t bunny hop, so I have no idea. I’ll have to hug the pavement at 5mph from now on.”
unquote “Even though I love working at Howies, the best part of my day is usually the ride home. Especially so on days when the sun is out, but the air is cool enough so you don’t start sweating straight away. “The banks along the roads are growing out with cow parsley, willow herb and buttercups. The only downside are the flies that sometimes smack you in the face. It was so nice this evening that I took a long route home – 15 miles rather than the usual seven. Hoping the weather holds for more long rides home.” Howies Brainfood blog, May 29th
“The fact that Government remains so hostile speaks volumes about our real attitudes to green technology. What chance reversing climate change if you can’t park your bloody bike anywhere near the seat of the Government charged with trying to fix it?”
Sponsored by the brands of Moore Large 01332 274252 Jon Snow, Channel 4 blog, May 29th
Jon Byers of Eastern Bikes, ESPN blog, June 1st
“The technology used to make BMX frames today was around several years ago. It’s not rocket science; it’s just getting the manufacturers to do it or getting them to buy the right tooling and equipment. The firm’s attitude is by far the largest obstacle. We presented the cut out Grim Reaper concept to manufacturers over seven years ago and they just did not want to make it. You need the support of the manufacturer to work together and get new ideas accomplished.”
“For urban cycling, intersections are like watering holes for animals on the Serengeti. They are the place where various species who might not otherwise interact are forced to come together.” BikeSnobnyc blog, June 5th
“Mavic’s R-SYS wheels, which use composite spokes and which, you may recall (bad pun intended), were recalled back in January, can’t seem to get a break. Errrr, wait, can’t seem not to break. Yikes….” BikeRumor.com newsfeed, June 15th “To the business man who is shut up in an office or store most of the day, the bicycle is a God-send. It gives him the exercise he so much needs that he would not get in any other way.” ‘How to bicycle’ from 1892, by L. F. Korns, reviewed at Quickrelease.tv, June 9th
BIKEBIZ JULY 69
OFF THE RECORD
IN THE SADDLE
Is your store kitted out? Spokesman talks about an often overlooked sector of the cycle store – clothing. Margins here are high, so why are so few clued up...?
Mark Lee Sing Freelance Photographer, Evol Images
SOCKS. An item of clothing that defies all logic. I purchase those multi-packs because so many seem to get lost en route to the washing basket. The last count was 17 single socks that would not match up. I can therefore understand when a carton is opened to build a bike to find some parts missing, a scratch on the frame, or a nick on the saddle. We all know that touch-up paint does not travel well. It usually is cellulose that comes out the phial in a gel and is totally useless. Most Cytech trained mechanics will have an array of small 'Humbrol' paint tins to touch up those little scratches that are in places other than the top tube. The alternative to returning the product to the
What bikes do you own? They’re pretty much all steel and I’ve a fair few. Of the mountain bikes, I own a Tomac 98 Special Pro, Genesis Altitude 853, Genesis Alptitude 853 (set up for 4x), 96 Kona Explosif 853 and a Revell 450R single speed. Then there’s the road bikes. I own a Pinarello Sestriere and a Fausto Coppi Thron.
“The average newcomer is totally unaware that cycle shops sell clothing...”
Tell us who you have shot photos for: I’ve been commissioned to take photographs by Madison, 661, Fisher Outdoor Leisure, Flow Bikes, TwentyfourSeven, Scoop Distribution, Hotlines and Santa Cruz Syndicate. Then there are the magazines. Photos of mine have been published in Shred, Dirt, BikeBiz and Singletrack, as well as on DescentWorld and Wideopen.
supplier, which is not cost effective, is to give a reduction at the point of sale. It is common sense. The supplier does not want to go to the cost of picking the bike up for return, then having to sell it off cheap to those shops that will purchase end-of-lines. I am told that knocking off £20 will satisfy most customers, especially on bikes under £350. It is the phone calls that are made to the suppliers asking for £50-plus off which are laughable. When asked to take a photo of the damage, the large scratch and dent become small nicks on the bottom of the fork. I often wonder what happens to those little nicks in saddles, that only have a piece of material which has come unstuck, and a little glue would put right. Do they get thrown in the bin or are they actually repaired and resold? It’s so easy to phone the supplier for a replacement. The Tube strike in London this month did actually see all types of riders out on the city’s streets. Maybe some good will come of these wildcat strikes. London dealers have to be rubbing their hands together with chains breaking down under the strain, perished tyres causing flats and comfortable saddles being purchased.
What services do you offer the bike trade? I mainly offer my services as a freelance photographer for articles and adverts, but I’m also involved with some of the up-and-coming 4X, dirt jump and BMX riders helping to raise their profiles within the industry.
With the strikes and the milder weather, can we ever have it better in this industry? Sales figures are way up on 2008, workshops should be overwhelmed with repairs and best of all, many consumers are realising that there’s cycling clothing available that does not make one look like a Tour De France rider. How many shops ever mention clothing when selling a cycle? Forget the bell, the lights and pump. Clothing is the item with higher margins. A shower-proof jacket for both ladies and the guys is an item that should be offered with every sale. Why lose the sale to the outdoor retailer? The average newcomer is totally unaware that cycle shops actually have a clothing area. The industry has been looking for a second fiddle to cycles, yet it stares us in the face. Time for those suppliers within this lucrative market to produce decent brochures explaining the benefits of various materials. When I sold 'AGU' Clothing into the London shops many years before 'Carrati' (remember that company?) jumped on the band wagon, I made more commission than the selling of cycles. The brochure they produced was way ahead of those of other suppliers. I never understood why AGU did not wrap up this lucrative business. Instead the likes of suppliers with poor buyers missed the opportunity to take on the entire range. Ah well, that’s the cycle Industry.
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How can interested businesses get in touch? You can reach me at email@example.com or drop me a bell on 07973 560 338. What’s the wildest photo you’ve ever shot? Not sure about the wildest shots, but I’ve definitely had some wild times shooting, like being punted off the track, falling down mountains and throwing my camera as a discus in the process. I haven’t even started on the crazy times I’ve had with dirt jumpers yet!
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