Issue 59 | December 2010
Issue 59 | December 2010
NEWS 4-8 CHAIN REACTION 10
The latest on new products, new deals and recent events in the bike trade...
INDUSTRY OPINIONS 13
Retail Survey in association with
In association with CSG UK, BikeBiz polls dealers on their performance...
Retail heavyweights don’t open stores just for the sheer hell of it. It’s a sign of how attractive the bike trade is now.
MYSTERY SHOPPER The bike shops of Ipswich come under the glare of our undercover reporter’s investigations...
BIKEBIZ.COM GUIDE A look at the highlights, features and shiny new bells and whistles on BikeBiz’s brand new website
REVIEW OF THE YEAR We look back at the year that Best Buy backed electric, posties got booted off bikes and Cycling England got axed
CORE BIKE PREVIEW
WHEELS, TYRES, PUMPS
REGULARS BRAND SPOTLIGHT
Skyway is ramping up for a BMX resurgence. We quiz the firm over on page 30
The latest from Gravity, Hebie, Vocal, Pendle, Straitline and more are featured this month
of Cycling England and the fact that cycling infrastructure will have to scrap for cash from the Local Sustainable Transport Fund. But on the other hand, this year we’ve seen experienced retail giants – step forward Best Buy, Decathlon and Tesco – up their presence in UK bike retail. Cynics might argue that many have talked up the performance of the bike industry this year, but retail heavyweights don’t open stores for the sheer hell of it. It’s a clear sign that the market is just as attractive – nay more attractive – than it ever has been. While we’re on the subject of attractiveness, I’d like to draw your attention (somewhat clunkily) to the brand new BikeBiz website. It’s a good looking site, especially compared with the more, erm, functional BikeBiz.com of the past. It’s not just about having bigger pictures either. The site has been built from the ground up for the cycle industry, and has been craftily designed to adapt and evolve to the changing needs of us, you (the readers) and the trade at large. So expect more new features and handy stuff over the coming months from BikeBiz.com. And while it might seem a little underhand to big up online in the pages of the magazine, the website and print publication are really just two of the different ways that the trade can read about, take part in and keep up to date with the bike business. If you haven’t logged on yet (where have you been?) turn to our guide on page 33 to find out more.
Jonathon Harker, Editor
Training providers go head-to-head in this month’s two-page special edition
Richard Schofield joins Future as director for the media firm’s sports and automotive portfolios
IT’S LIKELY that bike retailers are facing up to winter with some trepidation. Last January, poor weather proved enough to discourage shoppers from visiting the High Street – including hardened northerners as well as southern softies – and that had a direct effect on sales for many bike dealers up and down the land. This time around the shops of Great Britain will also have a VAT rise to contend with, not to mention that austerity-driven economic climate. So, more frown lines and grey hairs due for bike retailers? As ever in the cycle industry, there are plenty of reasons to be positive, with an optimistic spin for even the gloomiest news. Take the austerity drive, for example. It’s forcing many to rethink their travel choices and not to squander petrol quite so freely. The solution? Get on your bike. And – despite a noticeable tail off over the last couple of months for independent dealers (see the ActSmart’s monthly analysis on page 75 for more on that) bikes have, seemingly, had another strong year. Clearly the trade has not been immune to cut backs – you only have to look at the culling
The rise and rise of Evans Cycles is good for the trade, argues executive editor Carlton Reid
Best Buy to electrify bicycle sales in 2011 Green technology and electric bikes are a ‘key part of UK strategy’ for giant retailer
By Jonathon Harker RETAIL TITAN Best Buy is keeping electric bikes firmly in its plans for 2011, and will stock a full ebike range in all of its new five stores next year. The retailer told BikeBiz that public response to its electric bike range – part of Best Buy’s ‘green tech’ product offering – has been hugely positive, and is ‘core’ to the firms UK strategy. The US-based retailer has over 1,000 stores across the world, with the first opening on these shores in April last year in Lakeside, Thurrock. The opening was the biggest ever for a Best Buy store anywhere in the world by volume of sales, and the retailer’s move to include e-bikes in its UK portfolio was seen as another sign of the growing momentum in the e-bike sector. “The electric bicycles that we stock – including from brands
such as Gocycle, UltraMotor, Izip and Xero Tech – have been very popular with our customers,” explained Green Tech manager Simon Jessup. “We recently held a very successful ‘test ride’ weekend at
“The electric bikes that we stock have been very popular. ‘Green Tech’ is core to our strategy.” Simon Jessup, Best Buy our Hedge End store where we showcased our latest range. Our wider selection of Green Tech products have also been very positively received.
“Green Technology is a core part of our UK strategy, as well as our focus on helping customers make smart decisions about technology and energy usage so they can save money and save energy.” Best Buy has also linked the electric bike offering with its brand new website, the firm revealed. “Customers can now take advantage of our ‘Reserve and Collect’ service, where they can choose and buy from a choice of three electric bicycles at our recently launched online shop at www.bestbuy.co.uk. They can then pick up from any of our six current stores. There’s also an extensive range of accessories available to buy online and in the stores, including pumps,
lights, helmets, locks, clothing and luggage.” For more on the electric bike sector, turn to page 37.
Chicken CycleKit snaps up Dedacciai “Their frame development has come on leaps and bounds. They’re doing many unique things.” Cedric Chicken
4 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
ITALIAN FIRM Dedacciai – split between ‘Strada’ (frame modules and framesets) and Elementi (components) – has appointed Chicken Cyclekit as the UK distributor for its two divisions. Explaining how his firm became involved with the manufacturer, Cedric Chicken told BikeBiz: "We’ve known of the brand for a while now, though Dedacciai’s frame development has come on in absolute leaps and bounds in recent years, especially with the introduction of hydroforming processes. They’re doing many unique things." Landing in the Leighton Buzzard warehouse as early as December, the components catalogue will cover handlebars, stems, bar tape, a crank and many other accessories. The
Dedacciai’s Elementi components will be stocked by Chicken Cyclekit
Strada side of the business is to cover framesets and modules with packages to be available to dealers from early January. Ten models are to be available with four carbon monocoque
builds, one titanium and the remainder a mix of steel and aluminium. Chicken added: "There will be builds suited to time trial, cyclocross, road, track and triathlon."
The distributor has also confirmed that it will be exhibiting at the consumerfacing London Bike Show at Excel from January 13th to 16th. Chicken Cyclekit: 01525 38137
Electric bikes and accessories will be key for Best Buy in 2011
Zipvit seals the deal with Jim Walker Team Radioshack nutrition favourite heading to UK retail Cervelo nutritionist Dr Child helped develop Zipvit’s newest range
Cycle Systems teams up with Nat Apprentice Service THE NATIONAL APPRENTICE Service has joined with training provider Cycle Systems Academy to offer a National Vocational Qualification to budding cycle mechanics. Recently launched at CSA’s London HQ, the Apprenticeship scheme is available to those looking for a route into the trade and to organisations seeking training for their staff. Firms from the trade, including Specialized, Trek, LCC, Pedros, Weldtite and Brompton, are supporting the Academy’s training offering.
“We are incredibly excited by this new partnership with the National Apprentice Service to offer an NVQ,” enthused Sean Lally, co-director and founder of Cycle Systems. “People have been asking us for some time whether they can get access to Government funding to train their employees in our qualification. The answer is that now they can.” CSA is also working with Havering College as its primary partner for cycle/green engineering delivery. CSA: 020 7608 2577
“We’re incredibly excited about Zipvit – we already know there is a huge demand from consumers and trade alike.” Tom Marchment, Jim Walker By Jonathon Harker JIM WALKER has signed an exclusive deal to bring Zipvit Sports Nutrition to the UK cycle industry. Zipvit has had a series of high profile partnerships in cycle sport, including an exclusive nutrition supplier deal with the Radioshack team, ahead of wellestablished rivals in the sports nutrition sector. Zipvit has also worked closely with the Cervelo Pro Cycling Team, including nutritionist Dr Rob Child. A range of products developed with the team is due to launch in 2011. The latest product from the ZIpvit stable is the ZV7c Gel, pitched as packing twice the
carbohydrate punch of its competitors and double the caffeine kick of a Red Bull. The concentrated dose means riders can carry fewer gels. “We’re incredibly excited to be bringing Zipvit Sport to UK retailers,” enthused Jim Walker marketing manager Tom Marchment. “We know there is already a huge demand from consumers and trade alike. Many of us here already use the products and we know how well they work and also how tasty they are.” Other high profile Zipvit fans include Kristen Armstrong, Thor Hushovd and Emma Pooley. Zipvit MD Warren Bailey added: “Jim Walker and Co were an obvious choice for us. They
have great brands which fit well with Zipvit Sport and they are renowned at providing great customer service which is very important to us both.” The Zipvit range includes energy and recovery drinks, protein and energy bars, gels and energy chews. The recovery drinks, which are highly acclaimed according to Zipvit, include research-proven lactic acid buffers and immuneboosting colostrum, deliberately avoiding soy, gelatine or other low value proteins. For more information on the new-to-the-UK range contact Jim Walker on 01323 445 150, at email@example.com, or at the firm’s trade-only site b2b.jimwalker.co.uk.
NEWS ANALYSIS in association with
Independent store survey unearths surprises During the past month BikeBiz has gathered the thoughts, reflections and aspirations of near 100 independent bicycle shop owners, the results of which can largely be found on page 40. Mark Sutton selects a few highlights from our poll for your attention…
Q: Which of the following have caused, or continue to concern your business? Discounted grey import competion is the most damaging thing to the independent business, according to feedback. It is certainly a bug bear of the BikeBiz forum, with many retailers calling on distributors to take strict action on their suppliers. Predictably, suppliers miscalculating demand is another major turn off and could cost some suppliers retail accounts.
Utility bill rises ..................................................34.1%
Courier charges or inflexibility ....................11.4%
Disposing of waste materials ......................23.9% Lack of cycle mechanics available for hire. 9.1%
Grey import competition..................................50% Complete bike price rises ..............................39.8%
Suppliers selling out of key lines ................46.6% The January VAT rise........................................27.3%
When would the ideal time for a UK trade show fall on your calendar?
Clearly retailers are strongly against taking time out from their businesses in the summer months. In fact, August through October, where many trade shows sit on the calendar, proved nowhere near as popular as we’d anticipated. Instead, January and Febraury are the clear favourites. Some retailers even referenced CoreBike (Jan) and Icebike (Feb) in their answers.
May ................ 2.45%
Where would you like to see BikeHub contributions spent? Encouragingly, the UK’s longest running industry-wide levy is still in favour with IBDs. With an annual pot now averaging above £400,000, funding is stronger than ever before. Under five per cent saw no value. Interestingly, the majority opted for things Bike Hub already caters for. However, Transport compatibility issues were raised, as was education of consumers on the dangers of buying cheap.
Promoting independent bike shops ........................................................16.5% Promotion and development of cycle routes on and off road ....30.6% Construction of dedicated cycling facilities (skate parks etc) ...... 4.7% Education of consumer on false economy of 'cheap' bikes ............9.4% Youth club, school and adult cycle training ........................................23.5% Scrap the Bike Hub scheme ........................................................................4.7% Integrate cycling into wider national transport ..................................9.4%
Cycling England’s Phillip Darnton talks BIke Hub expenditure...
“These results show the contributions to be well spent...” Phillip Darnton 6 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
Across the UK over 750 businesses contribute to Bike Hub, and have done now for over seven years. The results of this survey show that 40 per cent of respondents want to see funds invested in promoting cycle routes and links to transport. The new Bike Hub app does just that, enabling
people to plan journeys, and at the same time find their nearest IBD, something which another16 per cent of wanted. What is more, almost a quarter said they saw the importance of training young people to ride their bikes properly. This has been at the heart of Bike Hub’s efforts
since 2004, both with Sustrans and over 50 Bike It officers, as well as key projects with young women in Darlington and older people via the LCC. Of course, Bike Hub cannot satisfy all contributor’s particular wishes, but these results show that it is making a terrific contribution.
Phillip Darnton BIKEBIZ.COM
22nd - 24th February 2011 Registration Now Open! Madison is pleased to launch the 2011 iceBike* event to our customers. Registration is now open via the event website www.icebike.co.uk
Even more on show, in a bigger space than ever with a host of new products and brands. A new schedule of useful business seminars including two new speakers and old favourites! On-line registration, booking and ticketing system allowing you to make the most of your visit. Three open invitation parties, on us, come along and enjoy the entertainment. As always, some fantastic special offers, exclusive to iceBike* attendees!
Visit www.icebike.co.uk to register now Stick the dates in your diary and leave the rest to us!
CYCLE SHORTS Save the date for Expo 2011 Fisher Outdoor Leisure has revealed the dates for its forthcoming Expo dealer show. Set to take place at St Albans, Sopwell House for the second consecutive year, the show will run from Sunday February 20th until 22nd. Find out more at www.fisherexpo.co.uk
York Cycle Show correction The York Cycle Show will run on June 25th and 26th next year. Previously, BikeBiz incorrectly stated the show will take place in July and would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused. Find out more at www.yorkcycleshow.co.uk
Cops get kids off motorbikes Cardiff East Police Force is running a scheme to encourage youths off trials motorbikes and quad bikes by offering them £250 bicycle vouchers, to be redeemed in Halfords.
Super bike docking station planned for Waterloo Transport for London has started work on a 124 space ‘super’ cycle hire docking station close to Waterloo – the biggest station yet for Boris Johnson’s Barclays Cycle Hire scheme.
Icebike* opens pre-registration Dealers have been invited to book their places for the fifth – and largest so far – Icebike* show from Madison. The event will sport a double decker expo tent, while retail experts will give seminars. www.icebike.co.uk
For breaking news visit:
www.bikebiz.com 8 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
Gates: ‘belt drives the future of CX’ ‘Clean, quiet, light and strong’ belts to be adopted by more cycle manufacturers By Mark Sutton GATES IS telling the cyclocross world that ‘belt drives give you a racing advantage’ following its decision to equip its cyclocross racing squad with the Carbon Drive system. Team Gates Carbon Drive is the first in the world to run belt drive systems exclusively. Marketing director Paul Tolme explained to BikeBiz why the firm believes belt drive to be the future in this sector. He said: “The advantages of the belt drive are that they are clean, quiet, light and strong. Cleanliness is an advantage because mud and slop is common at CX races. With our system in particular, this grime gets pushed right through the ‘Mud Ports’ on the sprockets. The silent transmission also means you can sneak up on the
competition. The entire system is lighter than a chain drive, too. “The strength of the belts comes from the non-stretch carbon fibre cords within each. Singlespeed cyclocross racers generate high torque that can easily snap a chain.” The lack of required lubrication is another firm advantage of the system, meaning even in dusty conditions a belt drive shouldn’t clog up. Gates also informed BikeBiz that the number of manufacturers utilising belt drives is to massively increase as 2011 stocks land. The number of bikes using Gates own Carbon drive system is to double yearon-year, with at least 90 confirmed models from a variety of manufacturers adopting the technology. Gates: +49 5185 60266-50
“Singlespeed cyclocross racers generate high torque that can easily snap a chain.” Paul Tolme, Gates
Dealers praise Moda growth “Dealers were surprised at how much Moda has developed over just one season.” James Ryan, Eurobike Ltd
ALMOST TWO years on from the distributor first opening its doors to the trade, Eurobike Ltd has hailed dealer reaction to its developing brand line-up, and in particular the Moda bike range. Dealers, pro cycle teams and journalists attended Eurobike’s dealer trade shows over September and October this year, followed by an open week at the firm’s Derby HQ. Moda has proved to be a key draw for dealers to the new distributor, which also stocks American Classic wheels, Hincapie Clothing, Airbone Pumps, Bebop pedals and Ultimate Ceramic Bearings. “We have been really pleased with the turn out at each of the
shows and the enthusiasm shown towards our products has been fantastic,” commented marketing manager James Ryan. “More than that though is the response and feedback we've had on the Moda bike range. You never know when you work on
something so closely for so long if it’s going to be well received, but not a bad word was said and a number of dealers expressed their surprise at how much the brand has developed after just one season.” Eurobike Ltd: 01332 774796
Moving toward a 100th anniversary BUILDING up a market for a brand is seldom the job of an import distributor. It is the creation of its maker, whom over the years uses a growing knowledge of particular mechanical processes. Today, one continues to see the re-birth of original ideas. They are not new, but like an old song, are given a modern treatment. It can also be an archive product, brilliantly conceived many years before, that is particularly appropriate to the current retro environment in which we find ourselves. Of course, this is only possible if one has a lineage of professional ability that identifies a manufacturer as one of the best in its field. Our company has seen a lot of changes in its 91 year history. Its origins go back to the importation of Karl Koppel German tubing, later to become Kromprinz the biggest European maker of rims, whom Chicken represented in the UK. The manufacture of Baycliff saddle bags in the early 1950s was followed by a long-term agency agreement signed with Vredestein tyres in 1954. Shortly after that followed agencies for ESGE-Marby and van Schorthorst. The Industrial Chain Supply Co was formed in the early ‘70s to hold stocks of these – also Steco carriers and Videc bells. In 1974 the outgoing agent Walter Flory recommended the transfer of Weinmann brakes, Pletscher
10 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
kickstands and Maillard hubs to Chicken. Robert Jnr joined father Bob that year to be joined three years later by his elder brother Cedric who founded Cycles Peugeot (UK). Agreements were made the following year in Italy with Selle Italia, 3T, Selcof, Ofmega and Bierreci. In 1980 the company moved to the Bisley Works.
“Today, one continues to see the rebirth of original ideas. Like an old song, they are given a modern edge...” European manufacturers largely missed the lucrative BMX market and were subsequently slow to tool up for the 1980s MTB market. It was at this point that Chicken opened a lightweight listing whereby dealers could buy T.A. chainrings and all number of more specialist product at competitive prices directly from them. Following Sachs’ decision to work with Chicken, 11 different groupsets were to remain on warehouse shelves, unsold, prior to the acquisition of Sachs by
SRAM. Weinmann collapsed in 1988 and with the diminishing demand for road bikes and components Chicken was losing sales in a largely MTB market. The big UK manufacturers were starting to
With less than a decade to go until Chicken Cyclekit hits its first century in business, Cedric Chicken guides BikeBiz through the firm’s rich and occasionally rocky history...
its distributor. Sapim, Mavic and Campagnolo followed and the strong service element that Chicken had adopted played a major part in sales growth. The exclusive Sapim brand has seen unprecedented increases in UK business, while Campagnolo sales via Chicken increased largely at the expense of other importers. The lack of OEM business gave rise to Tifosi, Chicken’s own brand of custom build t, bikes. The market Cedric Chicken, lef for 3T was firmly as a young athlete established and Cinelli, the holding company, appointed Chicken to also act on their behalf, before selling 3T. The die was cast and the niche racing market was to remain largely European. Every one of these suppliers ensured the lose continuation of the business to the Far East. company following In 1997, Chicken sold its the devastating fire of November freehold Bisley Works offices, 1st 2007. They did this by showrooms, pub and large scale immediately re-directing to the warehousing that had been a UK all the most urgent supplies centre of sponsorship activity for that were needed. They ensured over 20 years. Time was the next that Chicken Cycle-kit was not big brand to appoint Chicken as going to disappear.
With stocks replenished, albeit without Mavic, Chicken’s reaction was positive as it sought replacement brands. Rigida, an adversary for many years, was an obvious replacement for Mavic. Vittoria took the place of Vredestein. The big Moa Sport company appointed Chicken to sell its Nalini, Bianchi Milano and custom clothing in the UK. A computer brand was needed – Velomann; helmets – Las; Turbo trainers and eyewear – Jet Black; carrier racks and luggage – Pletscher; also a secondary range of group sets – Miche. Most recently bars and stems from Deda have been added. All of these are significant companies with their own production of particular products. The purchase of 30,000 sq ft of warehousing will ultimately exceed all needs in terms of office and showroom space. The new computer system installed in September is another far-reaching improvement. Specialist manufacturing knowledge, accumulated by our suppliers, has now moved from engineer’s workshops and design departments to marketing departments. The true worth of these long established European companies is increasingly apparent. Service levels, availability of spare parts and short-haul delivery delays offer worthwhile advantages over the competition. Chicken Cyclekit: 01525 381347
CYCLELIFE DUMFRIES, DG2 WHEELS Established in 2009 Cyclelife, DG2 Wheels is fast becoming the leading bike shop for series bikers in the Dumfries and Galloway area. Owner Andrew Grant previously worked in the car trade as a salesman. Having always enjoyed the interaction with his customers, being a keen cyclist and wanting to work for himself opening his own retail business was an easy decision. Running the bike shop meant that he could spend more time with his family and eventually his son would be able to join him in the venture. The first year of trading has been very, very good, a lot better than expected. Cycle to Work schemes, Cyclescheme in particular have been important in developing the business. “The support from Raleigh has been excellent, spreading the finances over the first twelve months was a great help and my rep Scott Davidson has been available to advise on stocking profiles”. Andrew is involved with the local community and is proactively promoting his business to increase footfall to his store. Cyclelife Dumfries takes part in all the marketing initiatives including the distribution of flyers to local residences and preferential rates with yell.com and Touch Local. Andrew’s policy is “I am not here to sell a bike, I am here to help the customer buy a bike that suits them”. The plans for the future are to consolidate on this years trading and build on the serving and repairs side of the business. Andrew’s advice for any Cyclelife prospect is “Look at your market first, what is the competition. The support from Raleigh is second to none, so go for it but don’t think it will be easy”.
Cyclelife Membership Benefits • Retain your independent identity whilst trading under the Cyclelife brand • Enjoy preferential terms • Marketing Support • Store Development including 50% contribution towards shopfit, point of sale and signage
New store opportunities We are looking for independent bike dealers in various locations throughout the UK to join the Cyclelife Partner network. Target Towns – Aylesbury, Bath, Bedford, Brighton, Catterick, Lancaster, Lincoln , Newcastle, Norwich, Oxford, Warminster, Watford, Target Locations –Cornwall, Derbyshire, Devon, Dorset, East Anglia, Gloucestershire, Isle of Wight London, North Nottinghamshire, Somerset West Midlands, Worcestershire, Scotland, Wales, For more information please contact Paul Wignall at Raleigh on 07730 666647 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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The highs and the lows It’s almost time for a wee dram of whiskey and a spot of Auld Lang Syne. But will we be waving a fond farewell to 2010, or speedily sweeping the year under the carpet? Jonathon Harker asks the trade for their personal take on the year... “For me, overall the 2010 race season was overshadowed by major incidents on and off the road. Contador and Lance Armstrong were accused of taking drugs and Mark Renshaw thrown off tour for headbutting. Outside of racing, Boris launching the hire bikes and Cycling England being abolished stand out. Electric bikes dominating Eurobike and the Post Office losing bikes due to ‘safety’ concerns. Raleigh giving framesets and product to local schools to increase awareness in cycling technology and design was a highlight for me too.” Andy Parker, Product Manager, Raleigh
“For us the highlight of 2010 was another successful season from our professional road team and the launch of our new website. We're in a highly competitive market especially in the road cycling sector with the growth of the sportive culture. As an independent we focus on quality of service and providing our expertise, and as a manufacturer focus on high quality frames and components. Despite tough economic conditions we are stronger than ever before. And 2010 was very successful as the family-run company moved into its third generation. We are excited about what the future holds for Condor in 2011 as the response from the range preview at the Cycle Show
was incredibly positive. Our unsung heroes of the year are our team of six mechanics, who work in our workshop carrying out servicing and repairs, and also our team of bike technicians to build new customer bikes. Without them Condor wouldn’t be able to carry out the high level of customer care before and after the sale.” Grant Young, Managing Director, Condor Cycles “The obvious highlights for me were the various awards and the success of the fifth Brompton World Championship – an incredible turnout and a great day, despite the weather. Highlights that are not perhaps as obvious include the evolution of our website (we now have a wealth of dealer-
focused material online, and the new Environment and Society section is important too) and the very positive reaction to Brompton that I am getting on my current visits to markets where we are thinking of exporting.” Emerson Roberts, Sales and Marketing Director, Brompton
“CTC’s successful Vote Bike campaign encouraged thousands of cyclists to contact their candidates ahead of the general election, urging them to support pledge support for cycling. Meg Hillier MP and Lord Berkeley from All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group
joined CTC Director Kevin Mayne and a fleet of past, present and future postie bikes and freight cycles to deliver hundreds of letters urging Royal Mail’s new chief executive Moya Greene to Keep Posties Cycling. Ms Greene has since spoken to APPCG and promised to keep the dialogue with CTC open. Lowlights in 2010 must include Cycling England getting axed in the ‘bonfire of the quangos’, despite the coalition Government’s stating their support for cycling.” Roger Geffen, Campaigns and Policy Director, CTC “Our high points include the alltime record membership of 66,700. It shows a year- on-year growth of eight per cent, and that in includes no freebies. We’ve also seen a 30 per cent increase in bike dealers offering discounts to CTC members and dramatic growth in rider participation in CTC events.” Nick Fish, Commercial Director, CTC
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 13
DIRTWASH CLEANERS BY The ultimate range of mechanic approved total bike cleaners Cleans and protects without damaging paintwork, decals or metal surfaces • Dirtwash Bike Cleaner 100% acid free – cleans quickly and safely with minimum scrubbing 1 Ltr Spray 03028 5 Ltr Refill Tub 03031 • Citrus Degreaser Available as a liquid or spray, it’s specially formulated to degrease chains and gears 400ml Aerosol 03002 75ml Liquid 03017 1 Ltr Refill Tub 03022 250ml Spray 03023 • Metal Polish Unique formula polish suitable for chrome, stainless steel, aluminium and all other metals 75g Tube 02007 • Disc Brake Cleaner A heavy duty cleaning spray for disc brake systems 250ml Aerosol 03029 • Chain Degreaser Machine A robust chain driven degreasing machine with four-sided brush action Machine and 75ml bottle of Citrus Degreaser 06017 • Hand Cleaners Kind to skin, tough on dirt – with polymer beads to aid cleaning Beaded Hand Cleaner 5 Ltr Tub 03008 Citrus Hand Cleaner 500ml Tub 03020
WE ARE BIKE MAINTENANCE www.weldtite.co.uk
14 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
INTERVIEW LYME MEDIA
A new show proposition... 2011’s cycle trade show calendar has been vastly changed, not least with the arrival of a brand new trade-only expo in Coventry. Managing director of organiser Lyme Media & Events Jerry Ramsdale talks to Jonathon Harker about location, pricing and date controversy...
“The Cycle Trade Expo is more cost and time effective for smaller retailers and IBDs.” Jerry Ramsdale
What is the organisation’s background? Is it new to events? New to the cycle market? I have over 15 years experience in the events industry, having recently sold a portfolio of international trade manufacturing exhibitions allowing me to focus on a new direction with Lyme Media & Events Ltd, setting up new events in new markets. My background is in fasteners and fixings so I’m new to the cycle market but believe that this fresh insight will invigorate the industry with new ideas, and can only benefit the marketplace. Are you surprised that the bicycle trade doesn’t currently have a trade-only event of this
nature? Do you see the show as filling a gap in the sector? My team and I really do see the event as filling a gap in the marketplace. It’s a trade only exhibition for cycle retailers to take stock of their business as a whole, and meet with the industry in a single place to do much more than stock their shelves. It’s a chance for retailers who may not have the budget to visit numerous in-house shows to meet with many key suppliers in one day. It will also offer those with and without in-house shows a cost effective opportunity to meet face-to-face with even more of the market. Is that the key differentiator from other cycle events?
This is what makes us different from all other exhibitions in the marketplace. The trade-only format means we can bring together all sorts of suppliers to the trade that wouldn’t necessarily work within a consumer exhibition, the nuts and bolts behind the businesses so to speak. It also provides a convenient and productive business forum for visitors to meet with new and existing suppliers in one single place. This makes the Cycle Trade Expo more cost and time effective for smaller retailers and IBDs to attend and from the discussion we have had within the industry, before and after the launch, it can offer an alternative to visiting numerous in-house events.
Why that date? And have you been surprised by the critical reaction to the timing of the Trade Expo? There were a number of factors impacting upon our decision to hold the event in June, one being the effect that the Olympics has had on venue availability, as exhibitions tend to move for three year slots. Our commitment to 2011 has put us in a greater position to negotiate for a more appropriate date in 2012. Before launch we were expecting some companies within the market to react negatively to the date. Having said that we’ve been surprised at how well the industry has embraced the event and have been receiving lots of positive feedback from potential
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 15
INTERVIEW LYME MEDIA
exhibitors. The timing issue tends to be raised in relation to ordering stock, but the exhibition is about so much more than that. We feel it’s the right mix for the trade and retailers will attend the event to step back and look at their businesses as a whole. Why the Ricoh Arena? We chose Ricoh to ensure the event was located in as central a location as possible to make it accessible to as much of the trade from the UK as possible. The venue has great facilities, parking that doesn’t require a bus to get to the halls and is at the heart of the motorway network, just half a mile from junction three of the M6. There are also cost benefits to exhibiting at a smaller venue than, say, the NEC. This means we can pass on some of these savings and really drive down the cost to exhibit. Can you fill in any details about what the event is going to include? The event will feature a number of exhibitors all offering something of tangible value to the UK retail and IBD market. For visitors we’ll also be running a seminar programme dealing with a number of key issues facing the retail market as a whole, and the cycle trade in particular. We’re also hoping to make meeting rooms available to all exhibitors so that business can be closed off-stand but within the exhibition itself, offering immediate return on investment for exhibitors. These will be shared meeting rooms with timeslots available on request. You’ve previously said that pricing is set to be a key draw too? Can you give us some more detail on that? The price for a basic 3m x 2m shell scheme stand at the exhibition is £1,450+VAT; included in the price are two spotlights, a 500W power socket, carpet, signage and entry into both the printed and electronic exhibitor listing. We also have larger stand size options available, up to 20m²; all complete with the features of the basic stand package. In order to create a level playing field for all exhibitors and to encourage visitors to engage with the products held within the stand spaces, we only offer shell scheme stand options. We believe this will create an exhibition focused around visitors doing
16 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
business and will overcome the common theme of trade days at consumer events where exhibitors are unsure whether they’re speaking to an end user or retailer. Is there a long-term plan for the show? The long-term plan is to keep it at the Ricoh as there is space for growth and to keep it shell scheme to ensure we provide as level a playing field as possible for all exhibitors regardless of budget – which will in turn focus the event around the products and services and doing business. We’ve got the opportunity now we’re in the venue to look at overcoming the date issue so we’re speaking with as many people, from a wide a crosssection of the cycle market, to get the best date possible. We want to improve and evolve the event year-on-year and this is where trade involvement comes in. I’m always open to suggestions on how we can improve and develop the show for the benefit of the trade.
“The venue has great facilities and there are cost benefits to exhibiting at a smaller venue than, say, the NEC.” Jerry Ramsdale
We’ve had great interest and have had a number of commitments to exhibit, but until contracts are signed I’m not in a position to drop any names as of yet. So you can’t reveal who has signed up yet? That is still all hush-hush? We’re in contact with manufacturers in a number of countries including EMEA, APAC and the Americas, all looking for representation within the UK. What we’re trying to achieve is a balanced representation of quality products from right across the globe, all available to the UK market. We’re also looking for ways to feature UK manufacturers and showcase the Best of British. With exports to APAC of UK manufactured products set to increase and new trade link-ups between the UK and the region, there will also be opportunities for cross-trading between exhibitors and the potential to create channels to a wider global audience at a UK based event.
Have you got any final thoughts on Cycle Expo for the cycle industry? We’re hoping to bring our experience in events to offer something of tangible value to the UK cycle market. Although we are new to the bicycle industry we feel that our fresh perspective at Lyme Media and Events will help to develop an event for the trade to come together as many other industries do; to take stock of the past, improve and adapt in the present and be in a position to tackle the future head on with new ideas and ensure that the cycle industry continues to grow.
Contact: www.cycletrade-expo.co.uk 01727 738700 @CycleTradeExpo email@example.com
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 17
Any port in a storm Ipswich used to have one of the UK’s most active economies, though judging by Mystery Shopper’s latest series of store visits in the port town, times have changed. There’s seemingly not much going on in the present day. The world’s heaviest man lives in Ipswich, if you needed useless trivia. Mystery Shopper wonders if his lethargy his rubbed off on the town’s retailers…
Phil’s Bike Company
LISTED AS an Action Bikes outlet on Google it took Mystery Shopper a short while to spot Phil’s Bikes, despite a High Street location. The store itself was quite deep so held a diverse stock, though very few folding bikes were available. In fact, the assistant whose attention was hard to keep throughout, believed that there was just the one model in stock, though BikeBiz’s spy actually spotted another, which just happened to match the quoted budget for which, "nothing was in stock." When further pressure was applied by Mystery Shopper, the man behind the counter took a few moments away from the computer screen to discuss possibilities, though didn’t seem too fussed about making a sale. If Mystery Shopper had anything more than Monopoly money to part with, this store would without doubt be £400 down. To be unaware that the perfect bike for a customer’s needs is sat on your shelves is top of Mystery SCORE Shopper’s list of retail sins.
AS A CYCLELIFE retailer, the low stock levels of folding bikes at Moon’s wasn’t an issue. "We can have any bike on Cyclelife.com in a matter of days," Mystery Shopper was informed. "You can even order it to our store online and we’ll have it fully serviced and ready for you just as fast." It seems that the Cyclelife website works well as a sales tool for those enrolled on Raleigh’s concept store scheme. The assistant was keen to show off the promotions to be had with online orders, including £30 plus worth of free accessories with a bike sale such as mine. Sensible things, such as locks and helmets, were recommended as a priority. Adding his personal thoughts on the cheaper end of the market gave Mystery Shopper the feeling that a beginner cyclist would be won over and leave satisfied enough to part ways with some hard earned. A free service was offered once the bike had been ‘ridden in’, too. A solid and concise sales performance, even if it did rely SCORE on virtual web-props.
[ 1/5 ]
18 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
[ 3/5 ] BIKEBIZ.COM
Thomas’s Cycle Revolution OF THE STORES visited Mystery Shopper felt Thomas’s Cycle Revolution to be the best presented, much thanks to the amount of natural light in store due to its glass front. The counter overlooked the majority of the store too, so it wasn’t long before Mystery Shopper was met. The assistant got off to an encouraging start, admitting that no stock was currently in store, but informing me that I had the choice of two brands, offering his preference immediately when hearing my budget. Explaining to me that the only difference between the two brands appeared to be the price, I felt the store was keen to help me achieve the most from my budget. Advising on the warranty of the two brands was also a key differentiating point between Thomas’s store and others. Highlight several manufacturing strengths of the specialist, I felt the assistant was pitching a product he believed to SCORE be good enough for his own use – and bang on budget.
[ 4/5 ]
Ranelagh Cycle Warehouse
PERHAPS THE largest store of the Ipswich tour, Ranelagh Cycle Warehouse had a wide and diverse stock, though again, few folders. Mystery Shopper had a brief nose around before seeking attention, but was almost floored on his way to the folding bikes by a few bikes hanging dangerously low from ceiling fixings. Apologies to the road bike I headbutted… An assistant met me while browsing the store and begun to share his knowledge of what the Ranelagh could offer, though models would have to be ordered in to satisfy my budget. My concerns about the bike unhinging while being carried were directly addressed with the flagging up of a model equip with magnetic closure. It was bang on budget too, so it seemed the assistant knew his stuff. A £35 bag was also offered as a solution to easy carriage. Recommending I spend the full £400, the assistant bolstered his recommendation by explaining what each price SCORE point would deliver.
BY FAR the busiest of the stores visited, Elmy Cycles staff were all tied up when Mystery Shopper arrived. When met, as in other stores, it was explained that few models were stocked, though a variety of bikes could be ordered in and built inside three working days. A Ridgeback folding bike was recommended over the other stocked brands, largely justified by the difference in build quality, but with the mention that with this brand a carry bag came as standard. Though this is a decision of Ridgebacks, it reflects well on the shop to be able to offer these add on conveniences. Differences in gearing specs were detailed in the pitch, which would help a customer understand gearhubs and the low maintenance associated with them. Though at a price, this may appeal to some and Mystery Shopper was glad the salesman went into this detail. A Ridgeback catalogue was handed over as a point of reference. The only real criticism to be had here was a slightly SCORE cluttered arrangement of bikes.
[ 3/5 ]
[ 3/5 ]
Summary Ok, so Ipswich wasn’t quite as grim an experience as I suggested, but similarly to last month’s visit to St.Albans, Mystery Shopper left feeling like no store particularly stood out as a ‘definite sale’. If a ‘winner’ has to be chosen, Thomas’s Cycle Revolution just pips Elmy Cycles as Mystery Shopper’s personal favourite, though this was largely down to the store owner injecting a little personal opinion into the pitch, rubbishing one brand over another. Phil’s Bike Company’s assistant was either uninterested in his customer, or mid-way through some online business. Mystery Shopper couldn’t possibly know which, though raising your head from the screen while talking is the very minimum amount of attention a customer should be offered.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 19
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CORE BIKE 2011 PREVIEW
You’re Core-dially invited... ...to the ever-popular, trade-only, long-established cycle trade show at Whittlebury Hall. Jonathon Harker previews some of the upcoming attractions set to rock Core Bike 2011...
2pure CLIF SHOT is a new, all natural electrolyte replacement drink for Clif Bar. Available in Cranberry-Razz and Lemonade, the Shots will appear at Core alongside the new Clif Builder bars, boasting all-natural protein and available in Chocolate, ChocolateMint and Peanut Butter. Also showing at the 2pure Core stand will be Crank Brothers – with new-feature packed Eggbeater and Candy pedals. The brand also has an all-new line-up of cockpit parts including stems, bars and seatposts for XC and all-mountain use. Pedro’s Master Toll Kit 3.0 – known to many in the trade as the ‘MTK’ – will appear, as will Pinhead’s new Bubble Lock – the backbone of a complete one-key locking system that secures bike frames. The 65 year-old firm De Marchi will bring along some stand out models in the SS2011 range, like the Contour EVO jersey and Contour EVO Bib Short. Elsewhere, the Ibis Mojo HD (Heavy-Duty) is built like a tank, but
Buff and Sueme doesn’t ride like one, with a 1.5 tapered steerer and refined carbon layup. The Hakkalugi has returned to the fold too, with a huge chunk of weight removed from the carbon fibre frame. Niterider’s 2011 range of technical lighting systems sees the introduction of the Lightning Bug and Stinger Tailight, both boasting easy installation so they can be quickly removed and popped into the cyclist’s pocket. Other highlights include the Pro 700 LED and 700 LED Race, the latest MiNewt lights: the 700 Dual, 350, 250 cordless and 150 cordless.
BUFF WILL preview its Polar Buff Reversible, a swish combination of two of the most well-loved Buff fabrics – Original Buff polyester microfibre and Polartec fleece – into a continuous tube. This combo creates an air cushion to prevent heat loss. Worn in over 30 different ways, it retails at £24 with a trade price of £11.75. Also from the firm will be the Buff High UV Protection Collection, packed with new designs for spring ’11. All products in the collection rapidly absorb sweat, with a high degree of transpiration and between 93 and 98 per cent protection from the sun. The High UV Protection Buff is available in adult and junior sizes and retails at £14, trade £6.75 excluding VAT. Other Buff highlights at Core will include multifunctional cap Visor Buff and Visor Buff Evo2. The Buff Headband – a speedy absorber of sweat from the forehead during physical outdoor activities – will also appear at the show. Sueme will be previewing its responsibly resourced range of sportswear, including uber comfy tees. The firm started with the aim of creating the most comfortable and planet-friendly
tee shirts ever, and that mantra has been extended into the range of sportswear. Those ever-popular tees use a blend of bamboo viscose and organic cotton; the former is resistant to odour, highly absorbent and super soft on the skin, while the cotton gives the garment stability and resistance to wear. Sueme prints and care instructions use waterbased inks to reduce the use of solvents to the absolute minimum, keeping the print breathable and soft. Each SueMe Tee comes with a reusable, unbleached cotton shopper to reduce packaging, while the Tee itself features a range of details that have been transferred to the rest of the range that includes hooded sweats, men’s workpants and men’s and women’s trunks.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 21
CORE BIKE 2011 PREVIEW
Hope SET IN the Suzuka Room, the 2010 BikeBiz Award winning Hope will be showcasing its integrated cassette and freehub. As covered on BikeBiz.com, the cassette caused a stir at Eurobike and will be the first chance for many to get up close to the product, which is designed and machined at the Lancashire HQ of the CNC company. The superbright and robust Vision District 3, set to go into production early 2011, will be among the
highlights of Hope’s ever-expanding lighting range. Also up from the firm will be new wheels, brakes, headsets, BBs and more. Representatives from Hope will be on hand to talk dealers through products, discuss the weather, offer key information, brochures and advice about all things Hope. The company will also be drawing visitors’ attention to Hope’s brand new website, which can be found at www.hopetech.com.
Chicken Cyclekit THE DISTRIBUTOR is packing a powerful punch of product into its Core Bike offering for 2011. Chicken will showcase two new brands – Pletscher carrier racks and luggage, and Dedacciai (ranging from bars, stems to framsets). The stand will also include the new range of DedaStada bikes and frames and new bikes and frames from Time, Tifosi and Cinelli. Helmets will be catered for with the Victory Supreme, Anubi and Infinito brands, while there will be an extended range of MTB Sapim spokes too. More coloured chains from KMC will be on show for dealers, as will new SLR saddles – the Superflow, TT and XC Flow. Time i-clic pedals will be complemented with a new MTB shoe range. New Vittoria Cyclo Cross, Zaffiro and Diamante tyres will also be on show, as will JetBlack training equipment. Campagnolo’s new B11 group sets and Power Toque system will be joined by new Cycle Cross carbon and alloy Power
Torque chainsets. For Nalini there is new 2011 Pro Tour Team clothing and Bianchi Milano black jersey and bibs, plus long sleeve jerseys. Nalini also caters for women with the new Orca shorts and Alcantare short sleeve jersey, and kids too with the Pirrotine long sleeve jersey. Custom clothing options will also be unveiled. New product from SKS will be showcased, including the Bluemels matt black mudguards, the Dashboard rear and front MTB guards, plus a range of new pumps: the Metro Premium, Wese, Dingo and Champ Pro cartridge pump. There’s a host of new saddles from Selle Italia too, including the SLR Superflow, Carbonio Flow, TT, Flow and XC Flow. Other new saddles from the brand include the Turbomatic, the Turbomatic Flow and the 1980. For more details on the vast selection of bikes and accessories heading to Core Bike get in touch with the folks at Chicken Cyclekit.
Citrus-Lime THE CLICKS and mortar specialist will be demonstrating its brand new version of its Supplier Integration Module (SIM 2.0) at Core 2011. This latest edition of the Module is designed to take the pain out of a vast amount of work for cycle dealers when setting up products, dealing with customer special orders and getting their product databases onto the web. Dealers are encouraged to head to Citrus-Lime’s stand to see what the world of Electronic Point of Sale (EPoS) has in store in integrating supply chain and stock file integration. The EPoS specialist has great expectations for the product, expecting it to do for cycle EPoS
22 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
what the iPhone has done for mobile phones and devices. Citrus-Lime will also be able to discuss its new eBay and Amazon modules which integrate smoothly with SIM 2.0 so retailers can speedily and painlessly load products across four powerful channels: retail, ecommerce, Amazon and eBay. The firm reveals that it has spent over a whopping £40,000 on research and development in 2010, proving it is taking the industry very seriously indeed. CitrusLime offers a wide range of dynamic IT solutions that are tailored and adapted to the needs of bike retailers, offering integrated and eCommerce Solutions to the cycle indsutry. Existing and potential customers are invited to come along to the company’s stand at the show to meet the team face-to-face to find out more about how Citrus-Lime can help their business.
Featuring a very comprehensive range, the Advanced Mechanics Toolkit will satisfy any mechanics needs.
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£61.25 + VAT £56.15 + VAT
• Multi-speed Freewheel Turner • 1/2” Drive Wrench with Quick Release Function • Pro Shop Chain Tool (7, 8, 9 and 10 speed) • Nylon/Fibreglass Tyre Lever Set • Cable & Spoke Cutter for Shimano SIS SP • Shimano Hollowtech II compatible crank adapter • Flat and Cross head screwdrivers • Two-way brush • WD-40 (1.5oz/51ml)
This excellent quality and exceptional value toolkit makes the perfect gift for the budding home mechanic.
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ISIS/Shimano BB Tool (11B1) 8 Groove Spoke wrench (12F8) Cassette Tool (09C1) Crank Puller (04C2) Chain Tool (61C2) 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5 & 6mm Hex Key Set (36Q1) 6" adjustable wrench (25H6) 8mm Hex key (35V8)
Trade: 5 Rate:
£21.26 + VAT £19.13 + VAT
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8 & 10mm open ended spanner 2 x Flat head screw drivers 2 x Cross head screw drivers 1/2" Drive adapter Hollowtech 2/MegaExo BB Tool (11F1) Chain Whip Pedal & Box Wrench (34A2) Nylon Tyre Lever Set
Your ideal companion on the trail, the Trail Buddy will make sure you make it home
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CORE BIKE 2011 PREVIEW
Extra AS SOLE UK distributor of Tioga, Extra will be bringing the latest products from the brand to Core, including the snappily named Psycho Genius. The tyre has knobs that reshape to increase traction and stability, actively adjusting itself for a custom-tailored riding experience. It’s all made possible with a combination of unique knob
Ison Distribution architecture and rubber compounds, according to the firm. To find out more about the innovative Psycho, head to Extra’s stand at Whittlebury Hall. Tioga will be one of many top notch brands from Extra, joining Topeak, Easton, Selle Royal, Cane Creek, Alpinestars, Fizik and many more.
an in-mould helmet for kids, genetic’s lightweight fixed gear products and Rohloff’s internationally popular range. Other highlighted brands include Society, Dia Compe, Fibrax, Weldtite, Schwlabe, ODI, Buzz energy Bars, Surly, Salsa Cycles and All-City.
Windwave AS WELL as the chance to catch up on the latest products and tech, the Jim Walker stand will also allow dealers to pick up a goodie bag, with freebies from Thomson, Continental and more. As if that wasn’t enough, copies of the JW-Dler Book Green Pages will be available too. For new products 3T will have its new Zefiro bars, sporting aero tops and easily removed short extensions – adaptable tri bars that are legal for drafting events. A full array of wheels from Fulcrum will include the MTB range and the racing 5 and 7 CX wheelsets. If all goes to plan, the stand will also provide chance for dealers to see next winter’s Northwave and Campagnolo Sports Wear for autumn and winter. Experts will be on hand too, including Marc-Andre from Argon 18, discussing the design ethos behind the firm’s frames. Experts from Speedplay pedals will also be at the show. Despite being relatively new to Jim Walker, Clarks Cycle Systems has been a huge success, the firm tells BikeBiz, with a huge dealer take-up. Bikes will be served too, of course, with the new Sunn steel range – including the Sunn Tzar with 140mm travel forks and single-speed/geared dropout systems on display. The Merckx range, which has been attracting plenty of attention of late – not least at Cycle Show in October – will also be on show at Core.
24 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
NEW ITEMS for all of Ison’s top-notch brands will be on show at Whittlebury Hall, including White Brothers. The brand is launching a brand new suspension fork for 2011 called the Loop, boasting 32mm stanchions, cast magnesium lowers and a forged alloy crown. MRP will have the new ultralightweight Lopes guide and the G2 SL guides on show – touted as the most advanced chain guides to date. XC riders are also served with an expanded 1X range. KHE’s 2011 range of complete BMX bikes promises a pricepoint to suit all sizes from beginner to pro. The AD, ST and Pro ranges are signatures from big name pros including Daniel Dhers. Renthal has some tantilisingly top secret new products that it will be bringing to Core, while the latest from Ison’s in-house Light Blue will include the 853 Reynolds-tubed Kings framesets. Identiti’s new P66 comp bikes will also feature (with upgraded parts for 2011), while Gusset’s light and strong Woodstock 853 cranks will appear too. Ison’s jam-packed line-up also includes the latest from Halo – like the XC specific XCD wheels, TSG’s new pisspot-style helmets – now including
WINDWAVE tells BikeBiz that it feels its 2011 Core Bike line-up is one of its very strongest product line-ups, with improved dealer margins on revised products. Brand new for 2011 season is the steel urban bike range from Traitor Cycles, including the Luggernaut (pictured below), featuring classic lugged construction using Columbus tubes. The range also boasts ‘new school’ features like forged stainless steel dropouts, room for larger tyres and fenders, rack mounts and cable routing for internal gear hubs. The Luggernaut is available in fixed, singlespeed or three-speed build kits. The full range of wheel sets from FSA and Vision will also be at Whittlebury Hall. The popular entry-level RD60 wheelset will be showcased alongside the
FSA Team Issue, featuring a carbon/alloy clincher rim that weighs in at 1400g. Marzocchi’s 2011 range is the strongest since the original launch of the Bomber, according to the firm. Quality and performance are reportedly second to none, with the range already attracting high scores from the online and print press. The 2011 pricing structure is designed to make it easy for retailers to become Marzocchi dealers too, and there is a competitive staff discount to help shop staff get on the latest product. The new XC models from the brand start with the entry-level Marathon – weighing in at 1858g (with £239.95 SRP), and run all the way up to the Corsa Supraleggera weighing in at a competitive 1490g, with a £599.95 SRP.
CORE BIKE 2011 PREVIEW
Paligap SARIS HAS two new rack options available to the trade: the Bike Porter – a three-bike carrying steel frame constructed rack, and the Gran Fondo – an exclusive to Europe two-bike rack that fits cycles with 700c, 26-inch and 29inch wheels. Both racks include ratcheting anti-sway straps to secure and stabilise bikes, while the Bike Porter also features the EasyAttach fit system that easily adjusts to fit most vehicles. Kona has a raft of new rides available too, including the Supreme Operator downhill bike – a sleek, sexy, light and fast easy-to-maintain ride. The Supreme Operator comes with a slacker 64-degree ead tube angle, new 1.5-inch zero stack, tapered, internal head tube, mega-sized main pivots and an axle that slides in from the drive side of the bike so the rider can adjust and/or tighten the main pivot. Also featured is the World Cup-
ready 200mm travel DH race bike stock with a Saint group and Easton Havoc cockpit. Kona’s first complete carbon fibre mountain bike – the Kula Watt – will be on show too. Weighing in at a mere 1090 grams for its 18-inch frame, it features the customary Kula geometry and a new BB30 bottom bracket. The Paligap stand will also see the Ritchey components new Wet Red finish on a range of bars, stems, posts and saddles. Fast Forward’s new F2R full carbon clinchers will be showcased too. Meanwhile, Paligap’s recent signings, including Brev M’s fixie components (wheelsets, bars, stems, etc) and the MCipollini bicycle and clothing lines – including the very high-end RB1000 – will be at Core. The Cipollini-headed brand, featuring product made by hand in Italy, will be sure to attract attention.
SealSkinz FOLLOWING THE brand’s Core debut last year, SealSkinz is bringing 12 innovative new products to Whittlebury Hall in January 2011. Eighteen months of intense development went into the redesign of SealSkinz’s sock range. The results include the Thin Socklet, designed to be worn with vented or cleated cycle shoe, the thin and lightweight below-ankle-length waterproof sock has a fine merino wool lining. Other foot-centric wear includes the Thin Ankle Length Sock, the Thin Mid Length Sock, Mid Weight Mid Length Sock and the Thick Mid Length Sock. It’s not just about the feet though, the SealSkinz glove range has been updated too with four gold standard ‘Performance’
Silverfish gloves. The range includes the Performance Road Cycle Glove, the Thermal Road Cycle Glove, the Performance Mountain Bike Glove and the Performance Handlebar Glove. Ladies are catered for too with the Winter Cycle Glove. New for 2011 the rugged and insulated waterproof glove includes gel pad protection for a comfortable ride. Two new hat styles have been developed for 2011, designed to meet the demand for lightweight and versatile head protection. First up, the waterproof cap is a fully windproof breathable baseball-style cap, while the Thermal Waterproof Cap sports a microfleece lining and drop down ear flaps for additional warmth.
NEW FOR 2011 from Canadian Race Face is a wide range of ten speed compatible chainsets and rings in everything from 2x10 NEXT SL carbon race cranks through to the all-new trail ready 2x10 and 3x10 Turbine cranks. Also new from Race Face is the Turbine BB – set to come as standard on all NEXT, SIXC and Turbine cranks. Race Face also continues to offer soft goods and body armour alongside those high performance components, with more protection to the women’s line-up and an improved men’s offering. New colourways, d30 and strapping systems have been used in the men’s range, while for women the Kyber knee is designed for maximum protection with an easy strapping system. Cult Canadian brand Rocky Mountain is in its 30th year of mountain bike
manufacture, with two all-new models for 2011. The Element RSP and MSL offer riders either 98mm or 120mm of rear wheel travel from an all-carbon frame. CHUB will be displayed by Silverfish for the first time at Core. Sporting large flanges and carbon centre sleeves, the lightweight hubs are renowned for their looks and have a global following. German sport and luggage brand EVOC will be on show too, with a possible appearance made by EVOC team rider Steve Peat in the offing. Spanish Spiuk is new for Silverfish and will feature prominently at Core. With a range consisting of everything from pre and post competition body oils through to helmets, shoes, eyewear and a softgoods wardrobe for most disciplines of cycling, the brand will be a key draw.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 25
CORE BIKE 2011 PREVIEW
SIWIS SI WATTS will be exhibiting at Core Bike with his web company SiWiS, giving cycle dealers the chance to take a closer look at its internet solutions for bike-related companies online. SiWiS provides firms with bespoke web work, giving dealers the chance to have a dedicated system built to suit their individual needs, or to select the iBikeShop etail system – a ready-to-go ecommerce solution that includes simple
MERIDA UK self-management systems to make looking after the content of sites easy for novice users. Watts himself has worked in the retail environment and later as a rep for a major player at the time. The firm started out from Watts’ hobby of building websites for a few select customers, which then rapidly turned into a thriving business catering almost solely for the web needs of bike-related companies.
THE FIRM has six entirely new platforms and numerous re-designs which make up the Merida offering for 2011. Highlights include the One Twenty Carbon, sporting 120mm of travel and only 160g heavier than Merida’s stiffest and lightest bike in the 100mm
travel category – the Ninety Six carbon. On the road the new range-topping Reacto “Breakaway” bike ups stiffness and aerodynamics with no additional weight gain compared with the Scultura Evo. The firm will also showcase Alpina helmets. The German brand uses the same high spec raw materials and highend details throughout the whole range, from the entry level £19.99 kids helmet through to the £70-plus models. The light and comfy range features three shell sizes from the mid-range styles and a full crash replacement policy. Hot from its debut at last year’s Core, Birzman tools will also feature prominently at Core. A new entry-level multitool will be unveiled alongside new track pump products.
FOX THE ALL-NEW Striker Helmet is among the attractions from the Fox Core Bike offering. Lightweight and race-ready, the sleek helmet debuts spring 2011. Protection for the noggin is also offered by the Transition Hard Shell, in a classic ABS shell in street/park style. Clothing is covered with the Breakaway Soft Shell Jacket and the Ventilator Short – an ultra lightweight riding short with functional updates. New technology will also debut at the show in the form of Poron XRD Extreme Impact Protection, used in Fox’s new Ballistic arm and knee sleeves, and also in its Unabomber and Stealth Bomber gloves. Meanwhile Fox’s proprietary Aircool jersey is new for 2011, sporting Fox AirCool fabric which offers up accelerated moisture wicking. Innovative gloves are among the other highlights from Fox.
Upgrade UPGRADE HAS bagged three new brands for its 2011 portfolio: Cycloc, Freedom by WTB and Speedfil. The Cycloc bike storage pod design has been around for a while, but the product has been totally revamped with an injection moulding process, making it more commercially viable for dealers. The 2011 version comes with a 55mm spacer to move the pod away from the wall for bikes with wider handlebars. The list of features include security holes for heavy duty locks. WTB’s Freedom brand is born of the growing urban, commuter and leisure cycling movement. The after market product range includes tyres, saddles and a fixie style grip and is set to grow with
26 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
the brand sector. The Speedfil Hydration System is being pitched as a revolutionary cycling product designed to enhance athletic hydration and aerodynamics, available to athletes without having to take their hands off the handlebars. The wind tunnel developed, frame-mounted system smoothes airflow around the frame while the rider is in motion. Hydration is immediate with a bite valve and tube at the ready for when it’s needed. Aside from the trio of new brands, Upgrade will also take the Lezyne range of accessories, with new CO2 mini pumps – the CFH range – and dirt floor pumps among the highlights. DMR, Reynolds, Kinesis, Microshift and Effetto are just some of the other reasons to visit the Upgrade part of the Core Show.
CORDEE NOW ESTABLISHED at Core Bike after its debut showing in 2009, book distribution specialist Cordee will be at Core with a wealth of titles. Retailers looking for guides for their local area will be well catered for, the firm tells BikeBiz. The Philips Cycle Tours series of local interest, leisure riding routes is being rebranded and fully revised, with the first three in the series launched in the summer and the next trio coming in spring 2011. They include Around Oxford, which features 15 road rides and five off-road rides in Oxfordshire and Berkshire, while also touching on adjoining parts of Gloucestershire and Buckinghamshire. ‘Chilterns, Hertfordshire and Essex’ covers everything east of the Oxford book all the way to the Essex coast,
completing a loop around London. Alongside these two new books and the existing South of London guide, pretty much everywhere within 60 miles of the capital is covered. Chilterns, Herts and Essex has 15 road rides and five off-road options too. Finally, The Lake District, Lune Valley and Eden Vally covers 20 rides around the picturesque regions.
BIKEBIZ AWARD WINNER GOCYCLE
Go go Gocycle The winner of the first BikeBiz Product Innovation Award, the lightweight electric Gocycle has attracted attention from some of the biggest names in retail. Founder Richard Thorpe tells Jonathon Harker about the blood, sweat and tears behind Gocycle… How does it feel to be a BikeBiz Award winner? The whole team here feels honoured to be recognised by this cool award. Gocycle has been praised for its looks, not least because of the way the individual parts form the aestheticallypleasing whole. How many years, sweat and tears went into that design? I left McLaren Cars in 2002 to start the company – and we launched the business in April 2009. My three and a half year old son was developed in nine months to the day with just the occasional pat and rub on the stomach... Can you explain some of the innovations used in the Gocycle? The top three innovations include magnesium injection moulded frame and wheels – this is different from dirty die
28 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
castings and produces no SF6 ozone depleting gases. We are actually the first company in history to injection mould a magnesium bicycle frame and wheels – which gives us affordable and equal performance to carbon fibre. Secondly, we have a patented cleandrive system which is practically the only product multispeed enclosed chain drive with side mounted wheels. This means fixing a rear flat tyre is a non-greasy and easy job. Thirdly, patented pitstop wheels – front and rear are the same and easy to fix a flat. What was the reason behind retaining production here in the UK? We have had our fair share of start-up production teething troubles, and being based in the UK means that we can correct these issues quickly and also means we can service our customers with spares also.
“Manufacturing in the UK means we can correct any issues quickly and also means we can service our customers with spares.”
It’s been a big year for Gocycle at retail this year, in 22 Evans Cycles stores, and also in key John Lewis and Best Buy shops. Are you planning to get Gocycle into other big name retail names? Not sure we can do better than John Lewis and Best Buy – but we will try! What's next for Gocycle and Karbon Kinetics? Can we expect a MkII, or a range? Accessories? We certainly have big plans to build on the exciting and breakthrough Gocycle G1 platform. Expect lighter weight, lithium batteries, quieter motor drive, and improved quality in 2011. Further accessories, luggage, and in 2012 again there will be more improvements and expansion of the product family. It only gets better from here! Did the Eurobike showing open doors for the brand?
Definitely, winning the 2009 IF Gold Award – and this 2010 BikeBiz Award – always helps in all aspects of our promotion and brand image. What were your highlights of the year? Recently, this BikeBiz Award, to be honest, is a fantastic positive to our team. It is a real challenge to introduce new technology into this highly competitive marketplace – and to also be manufacturing here in the UK challenges us further in many ways. So to be recognised by BikeBiz is oil on the cogs and a big boost. And have you got any predictions for 2011? More people will be using bicycles for transport – that is for sure. Anything else to add? A baby: nine months. A Gocycle: nine years...
UNMISSABLE OFFER FROM SELLE ITALIA FREE
Signature Saddle for Yourself To celebrate our long association with Selle Italia, they are producing a Limited Edition Signature Flite saddle, which will be available completely FREE of charge to 120 Selle Italia dealers. Orders will be accepted between now and February 1st, the last day of CORE 2011, and despatched shortly afterwards. This superb promotion will be supported by both consumer and trade advertising. See www.chickenb2b.co.uk for all the details.
In every decade Chicken CycleKit have brought something new to the UK market. 1919 - William Chicken starts import of stainless steel tubing from Germany 1926 - Balance Sheet profit of £346 18 shillings and 11 1/2 pence 1939-44 - 2nd World War 1948 - Contract with Sedis 1954 - Contract with Vredestein 1969 - Contract with Maillard 1978 - Contract with Selle Italia 1988 - Contract with Sachs 1998 - Contract with Mavic, adidas 2000 - Tifosi UK registered 2010 - Contract with Dedacciai
Money Back Guarantee This covers all Selle Italia Gel Flow, SL and XC saddles. See Terms and Conditions at www.chickenb2b.co.uk
Test Saddle Unit Point of Sale material helps sell - and this is a great way to display the winning range of Selle Italia saddles.
See www.chickenb2b.co.uk for all the details
FIVE FREE Saddles
Flite Gel Flow
Get 2011 off to a good start. SLR Kit Carbonio Flow
Max Flite Gel Flow
Every Test Saddle Unit comes complete with 5 FREE saddles marked ‘TEST’, which are slat-board display boxed. The models are shown on the left. 5x identical saddles (not marked TEST) will be invoiced at a discount of 7% as will a further 5 saddles of your choice. All subsequent saddle deliveries will be invoiced less 5% through the whole of 2011.
£10 Consumer Vouchers These are redeemable at Selle Italia TEST Centres and will be advertised in both Road and MTB magazines. Your account will get a £12 credit per sale. (This is to cover costs of processing the voucher)
CH CKENCYCLE-KIT THE PERFECT BIKE
BRAND SPOTLIGHT COYOTE, SKYWAYS
Sky’s the limit In the early days of freestyle BMX if you weren’t rocking Skyway wheels then your bike just wasn’t cool. Mark Sutton asks Coyote Sports’ Iain Pollitt-Walmsley, with a resurgence in 20inch freestyle, can the Skyway be a hit with the new generation?
Can you give us a brief history of Skyways and Coyote Sport’s involvement with the brand? Skyway has been manufacturing wheels since the late ‘70s and produces product for a variety of market places. For example, the firm has a very strong presence in the medical sector (wheelchair wheels) and also in the agricultural market (they produce wheels for garden machinery). Coyote Sports has been dealing with Skyway over the past four years. We started off with the 20-inch Tuff II’S in black and white, and since then we have extended the offering of the Tuff II’s into blue, green, yellow, pink and orange in 20inch, as well as the Graphite version. We also carry 16-inch and 24-inch Crusier wheels in black and white. We have worked closely with the Skyway team in developing new products, and bringing about the reintroduction of some old products too. The firm is known for its roots in freestyle BMX wheels, but Skyway now offers much more – what can Coyote offer dealers? We have just had our first shipment of colour coded brake blocks, BMX grips and locking
30 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
grips, the response to which has been fantastic. We have quite a few new lines in development for next year, including tyres, saddles, handlebars. There will also be new wheel options, including different colours and hub specifications. One such development is the coaster brake and nine tooth cassette versions due early next year. Has the design of the wheels remained true to its roots? Skyway has kept to the same specification, with sealed bearings and the wheel being made from a dupont material, meaning that they are as strong as ever and stay true. Is the myth that ‘freezing’ a buckled Skyway can true the wheel infact true? To be truthful, I would think it a myth, but I would be happy to know of anyone who has been successful in doing this… Skyway now offers a carbon-fibre composite ‘Graphite Tuff’ - do you hold this wheel?
We do stock the Graphite version of the 20-inch Tuff II. The golden hub finish really makes the wheels stand out from anything else on the market. Wheels for the mobility market are also manufactured by Skyway, can dealers obtain these through Coyote? We work closely with Skyways and are more than happy to supply any wheel that they produce for any market. We can also offer a ‘unique’ colour
option if the quantities ordered by the customer are high enough. Can replacement parts/bearings be ordered via Coyote? Yes. We do have in stock bearing kits and axles, we are also waiting for our first shipment of POS material including t-shirts, stick sets and posters. How are sales of Skyway components going to date? The sales of all Skyway products has exceeded our initial estimates. We have more stock arriving very shortly and it’s nice to see repeat orders for the products
coming in thick and fast. We hope that the rest of the range has the same response and to continue to build on the portfolio going forwards. Is a typical end-user a BMX old-schooler, or are today’s BMX generation taking an interest? We see that the old school BMX riders love the fact that they can buy the products and the fact that the range is expanding, but we are also seeing a huge market for today’s generation wanting to ride with Skyway products. Then there’s the dads who used to ride on them wanting their kids to have a pair. What margin can a dealer typically achieve from selling Skyway wheels and components? Dealers can make very healthy margins on the wheels and even larger margins on the brake pads and grips. Does Skyway do OEM business with any brands? We have several ranges of bikes that have the skyway wheels on them, the most popular is the Rooster brand of Big Daddy and Big Momma bikes, but we also have the Piranha range, which carry Skyway wheels on some bikes.
BikeBiz.com revamped After months of planning, programming and testing, BikeBiz.com relaunched in November with brand new features and a slick new look. While you get to grips with the redesigned site Jonathon Harker takes you through some of the choice fresh features of the all-new site... Media Channels We may have revamped BikeBiz.com, but you can still get hold of the latest industry news in print, digital (downloadable PDF and also via ‘clicky-flicky’ Issuu.com), on internet enabled mobile phones and also through our regular email news digests. For more details, or to sign up with any of those, head here.
Trade Buzz Looking for all the latest stories on a particular hot topic in the news? Then look no further than ‘Trade Buzz’. Just click on the subject and all the relevant features, stories and interviews can be found in one handy place.
Your account Trade visitors to BikeBiz.com can now expect a lot more from the site when they log in. From customising the Carousel (see left) to managing their company details and public profile, users should head here.
One of the new eyecatching features of the site is the carousel. Highlighting news, fresh features and updates on events, this fully customisable tool can be set to filter homepage content of your choice.
Earlier this year the BikeBiz Bible returned to print for the first time in five years, following high demand from the trade. Now, alongside the new site, the Bible has gone online to provide an essential resource to the trade.
Integral to the site, the news capabilities of BikeBiz.com have been enhanced with improved visuals, more feeds gathering essential cycle news from respected sites on the web and more links to social media sites.
Launched as a Beta site last month, the cutting edge site is being refined using trade feedback. BIKEBIZ.COM
The ever-popular Forum has been given an update with a host of new features (see page 46). The Forum remains trade-only, and the key place online for the cycle trade to exchange ideas, tips, insults and much more.
YOU’VE TINKERED, you’ve played and hopefully you’ve been impressed with the brand new BikeBiz.com. Launched as a Beta site last month, the cutting edge portal is continually being refined with the help of the cycle trade and its feedback – directed mostly through the new Forum (see page 34).
The focal point of the site is the Home stream, channelling all the content uploaded to the site – News, Features, Events, Jobs – which can now be customised by the reader (see above). Trade participation has always been an integral part of BikeBiz.com, with the Forum a vibrant section of the site where the industry can debate and
converse. Continuing that theme, the new site has reintroduced the ability to comment on articles – providing you have registered, ensuring only trade members participate on BikeBiz.com. The Marketplace section has been overhauled so that everyone registering with the site can give their company a
basic listing – with a paid for premium option allowing you to add a full company profile and extensive contact details for a six or 12 month period. And that’s not all – there are new look Daily Digest and Newsflash emails, an evolving Jobs board and plenty more in the proverbial pipeline. Stay tuned to BikeBiz.com for more.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 33
Forum control bar In a bid to improve the user-friendliness of the trade-only Forum, users can – via the navigation bar – view active topics, see the latest posts, or just display comments that they haven’t yet read with one click.
Forum threads The new site packs more ‘at a glance’ info into the Thread display, listing who started the thread, how old the conversation is, how popular the thread is and plenty more.
Page navigation Long running threads are easy to navigate with the page buttons – so instead of scrolling endlessly through historical comments, just head straight to the latest posts by clicking here. Simples.
Last post The site provides a host of ways to make sure you haven’t missed the latest on the Forum – from this simple listing of who posted last on a thread, to a notification on your account details on the top right of the home page.
Job search There are a host of simple ways to navigate the popular Jobs page of the new BikeBiz.com. Bike trade vacancies can be filtered by job category and location using this search bar.
Job of the week Continuing in the same vein as the old incarnation of the site, each week BikeBiz.com will highlight a job of the week, promoting a new role each week role to site visitors.
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Job categories Those seeking employment in the cycle industry can head straight for the type of job relevant to them by heading here. Handily, the number of roles in each category is also listed for job seekers.
BRAND SPOTLIGHT WISPER
Wisper’s e-bike conversion kit, the DaaHub
electric With electric bikes grabbing the headlines for much of 2010, not least at Eurobike and Cycle Show, BikeBiz spoke to Wisper co-founder David Miall for his thoughts on the sector. Jonathon Harker takes notes... How’s business? And how robust is the electric sector? As our business is seasonal this time of year is quieter than spring and summer, so we use the winter to prepare for the coming season. Recently Wisper has reached out across Europe and we are currently very busy preparing for our entrance into the German market with a new dealer, continuing to establish the brand in Switzerland and building relationships with dealers across the continent. In the UK, it probably has to be said that business slowed down earlier than usual this season. However, we put this down to the general economic situation. Consumer spending has slowed down and this has affected the bicycle market overall too. However, we’re responding with marketing efforts, highlighting the cost benefits of electric bikes versus cars and other transport. At times like these a strong and established brand is vital and we continue to find that customers actively seek out Wisper for its durability and quality. Wisper introduced the first carbon e-bike in 2009. Does
Wisper aim to lead electric bike innovation? Our prime objective remains to lead the way in terms of quality of product and service. Product innovation is very exciting, however, at times too much development can have a detrimental effect on product quality and also price. Ultimately, dealers are looking for quality, reliability and value for money to be able to comfortably recommend our bikes to their customers. We have taken feedback from our dealers on board who preferred fewer product upgrades and changes. Our new 2011 range has therefore been streamlined and future-proofed to offer dealers a lasting product range that will remain in place for the next couple of years. Where we do see ourselves on the forefront of e-bike innovation is in selecting the best state-of-the-arts materials and components to deliver a real ‘cycle’ feel with the added boost of an electric motor. Our DaaHub e-bike conversion kit takes this concept further to being able to convert virtually any bicycle make and type into an electric version. We position
“Product innovation is exciting, but dealers are ultimately looking for quality, reliability and value for money so that they can recommend our bikes to customers.” David Miall, Wisper
ourselves in the market as being leaders in the trend for electric pedal power by breaking down barriers to cycling, introducing e-cycling products to suit all cyclists’ lifestyles and budgets. How has the trade reacted to the DaaHub e-bike kit? The DaaHub has been very well received by our existing dealer base, online retailers and new dealers who would not normally consider adding e-bikes to their product offering. We describe the DaaHub as creating a new genre in cycling, because it takes e-cycling beyond road and commuter cycling. Even experts like Petra Wiltshire, the triple Masters World Downhill Champion who has tested the DaaHub, is hugely excited by the idea of adding the boost of an electric motor to an off-road bike and the new dimension this offers to off-road and downhill. Dealers are continually looking for new income streams. The DaaHub is a perfect addition to the product range of dealers who sell both electric and traditional pedal-bikes, as well as dealers who do not wish to commit to a full electric bicycle inventory.
What's next for Wisper? We’re holding our first ever Dealer Conference in January to introduce our 2011 products, demonstrate the DaaHub, share marketing and PR plans and to exchange knowledge. Our dealers are part of the Wisper community and as we develop, it’s vital to keep communicating. We’ve also launched our new website as part of a brand update and we’ve sharpened up our logo to a distinctive black and white too. Our dealers report growing customer numbers visiting them who have done their research on the web. Customers often make buying decisions online, before seeking their nearest dealer. To continue to lead the market and bring new audiences to e-cycling, we need a strong web presence. What has been your highlight of the year? Without doubt the highlight was was the introduction of the DaaHub and the adoption of Wisper by several Police forces across the country. We recently delivered the first Wisper to the City of London Police’s Cycle Squad following their visit to our stand at the Cycle Show.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 37
BIKERIGHT CYCLE TRAINING
Cycle training... for retailers Andy Tucker, Marketing Manager for BikeRight! explains to Jonathon Harker about the retail opportunities in cycle training for adults... What’s the background behind BikeRight? BikeRight! is one of the organisations with qualified National Standard (NS) accredited instructors that deliver Bikeability training. For those who don’t know, Bikeability is the public brand of the National Standards for Cycle Training set up by leading cycling organisations back in 2004. The NS have three levels: Level One skills, delivered in an off the road environment such as a school playground; Level Two, performed on quiet side roads; and Level Three, which includes busy roads and complex junctions. Bikeability delivers eight hours training to school children aged 10-11 to achieve Levels One and Two, funded by local authorities or school sports partnerships, via grants awarded by Cycling England (or the Department for Transport from next year). Level Three National Standards, however, is largely taken up by a more mature audience: adults who want to improve skills, build confidence, or learn how to tackle today’s busy roads and complex junctions. They may be driven by the desire to commute by bicycle as part of a cycle to work scheme, for example. There has been lots of talk in the press about the demise of Cycling England and the potential impact on Bikeability. This ‘cycling proficiency for the 21st Century’ does seem safe for the remainder of this parliament. Future funding for Bikeability could be around £10m per year. How do you see cycle training fit in with retailing? There is a mounting body of evidence that suggests that
cycle training encourages longterm take up of cycling. This means long-term spending on cycling related items and activities, which can only be a good thing for dealers. Retailers could consider training as NS instructors and provide NS courses as a way of attracting commuter cyclists and offering a more holistic approach to cycling that goes beyond the sale of bikes and accessories – a kind of ‘push and pull’ tactic if you like. To quote Carlton Reid from last month’s BikeBiz – “Think of it as saving up for a rainy day” – cycle to work schemes are not guaranteed to be around for ever, let’s face it, government policy changes faster than a chameleon on a zebra crossing, and MAMILs who have progressed from golf to sportif races will no doubt soon find something else to spend their bonuses on. How can cycle dealers capitalise on this? There is a lot more that retailers could do to encourage cycling, being at the ‘coal face’ as it were and in direct touch with end users of bicycles. Yes, some shops organise great sportifs and field shop teams in endurance MTB races – but this only encourages competitive types and isn’t for everyone. There are lots of rusty cyclists, or potential cyclists, who just want to build confidence to become a regular rider. And we all know that regular cyclists spend more on bikes, clothing and kit. Retailers could build valuable customer loyalty by providing cycle training to customers – as an added value after-sales service, or to generate income during quiet periods. It is simple to become a National Standards instructor. A
“In Manchester, of the 300 adults trained in the summer of 2010, 76 per cent of trainees were women looking to cycle regularly...” Andy Tucker
School training up to Level Two is often funded by local authorities
specific course aimed at retailers provides everything a shop owner/manager needs to deliver National Standards cycle training to new and existing customers, even children. What do the courses include? There is an initial four-day training course leading to ‘provisional’ status. Those attending also receive a National Standards instructor manual and a post-course assessment to achieve ‘qualified’
status. There’s back-up from a leading instructor-training provider, regular updates and newsletters, use of our branding on promotional material and Ride Leader and PrePedal learn to ride training too. What are the potential returns for retailers getting involved? Shop-based cycle training could meet latent demand, particularly among women and cycle commuters. In Manchester, of 300 adults trained in summer 2010 (funded by the city council) 76 per cent per cent of the trainees were women, 20 per cent were learn-to-ride sessions and 18 per cent were one-toone Level 3 training for people wanting to ride in busy traffic. We also get hundreds of bookings for bespoke courses or open sessions during summer, Easter and half-term breaks. Typical charges for a two-hour session are around £50 per head depending on location and demand. With NS instructor training courses starting from as little as £190 (subject to availability of a £300 bursary from Cycling England) the pay-back period could be very short, whereas the benefits of customer retention and additional revenue could be realised over the long-term. Finally, where can retailers find out more? Dealers should visit www.bikeright.co.uk and follow the Instructor Training links for more information.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 39
RETAIL SURVEY 2010 in association with
Independents say… During November BikeBiz.com asked the UK’s independent bicycle retailers to report back on the past year’s business. Mark Sutton documents a few market shifts, split opinion on the show calendar and where contributors feel Bike Hub cash should be spent… By what percentage has your annual turnover increased or decreased in the past 12 months?
By what percentage has your business’ profit increased or decreased in the past 12 months
30% plus....................................................10.8% +20%..........................................................20.4% +10%..........................................................31.2% Barely changed........................................26.9% -10%..............................................................5.4% -20%..............................................................3.2% -30% or more ............................................2.2% Very little in the way of increased product turnover is indicated in the feedback, though the results are at least swaying towards increased business, rather than a decline. The vast majority report no more than a 20 per cent upturn in business.
+30% or more ..........................................7.5% +20%..........................................................10.8% +10%..........................................................40.9% Barely changed........................................25.8% -10% ..........................................................10.8% -20%..............................................................1.1% -30% or more ............................................3.2% Mirroring the turnover chart, profits, if increased year-on-year, display slow and steady progress as opposed to a boom in takings. Factors such as decreased consumer spend on luxuries and ever-increasing overheads may have affected many.
What portion of business does Cycle To Work scheme sales represent?
Are you selling more or less bikes on finance than this time last year?
50% or more ..............................................1.1% 40% to 50% ..............................................4.3% 30% to 40% ..............................................3.2% 20% to 30% ............................................17.2% 10% to 20% ............................................28.0% 1% to 10% ..................................................29% No C2W business at all ......................17.2% 2010 will arguably be the Cycle to Work scheme’s last year of strong sales delivery. Legislation tweaks and ongoing confusion over the scheme’s value have seen many employers put their participation on hold.
More................................................................25% Less ..............................................................22.6% Around the same....................................52.4%
Sadly, not much to report here. The demise of the ACT’s previously recommended Black Horse finance solution may have negatively affected stats. Thankfully, a replacement – Moneyway – has been found and comes with the Association’s seal of approval.
What figure best fits your annual takings for cycle clothing and accessories?
If you’ve made any cutbacks at all this year, where have they been? 50
£0 to £1,000 ..............................................8.8% £1,000 to £2,500......................................5.5% £2,500 to £5,000......................................9.9% £5,000 to £10,000 ..................................3.3% £10,000 to £17,500 ................................6.6% £17,500 to £25,000 ................................5.5% £25,000 and above................................60.4% It seems we may have underestimated the power of the IBD on this one. Over 60 per cent of respondents are turning over £25,000 plus, per year, on cycle clothing, shoes and protective gear.
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Staff numbers/cutting hours or pay ..........................31.5% Seeking out competitive utility bills ..........................49.3% Overhead costs via premises move ............................12.3%
Stock levels ..........................................................................49.3%
Seeking cheaper courier options ..................................27.4% Cutting bike stocks to focus on repair business ....17.8%
There won’t be a store in the country that hasn’t been spooked into cost-cutting exercises in these difficult financial times. And what better way to cut costs than to put the utility companies under pressure for more competitive rates. Near 50 per cent of you have.
RETAIL SURVEY 2010 in association with
What percentage of annual profit comes from the workshop?
Is the workshop more or less important to the business than this time last year? More............................................................51.1% Less ................................................................3.3% The same portion ..................................45.7%
1% to 20% ..............................................36.7% 20% to 40% ............................................42.2% 40% to 60% ................................................10% 60% to 80% ..............................................8.9% 80% to 100% ............................................2.2%
Though seemingly growing in popularity, entirely workshop-based businesses still represent a tiny fraction of those surveyed here. The majority are accounting for up to 40 per cent of their annual profit via cycle mechanics.
If your workshop rates are calculated correctly, the workshop has the potential to provide the healthiest margin of any ‘sale’. BikeBiz has previously found that many stores charge up to £80 for a full service, without complaint – are you still selling yourself short? In the past year, which of these sectors have seen a notable increase in in-store demand?
50 40 30 20
Leisure/sit-up and beg style bikes........55.8%
Hardtail MTB ................................................15.1%
Full-suspension MTB ....................................9.3%
Fixed gear ......................................................12.8%
Time Trial ..........................................................3.5%
There are two clear winners here – road bikes and the leisure sector. BMX is typically very in demand in the run-up to Christmas, so the timing of this survey may have boosted the 20-inch stats. Electric bike interest appears to be creeping up.
0 If you make a profit in this financial year, what percentage will be chanelled back into the business? 1% to 10% ..............................................16.2% 10% to 30% ............................................33.1% 30% to 50% ................................................16% 50% to 75% ............................................10.6% 75% to 100%..........................................24.1%
There are a few variables to take into account here, such as the worth of net profit made and the length of time a store has traded. Nonetheless, BikeBiz’s stats show the country’s IBDs to not be afraid of a little re-investment. Year-on-year, have you increased online business? Decreased online business ....................6.9% No ................................................................40.2% Grown it slightly ....................................35.6% Grown it significantly ................................8% Doubled (or more) online trade ..........9.2%
Half of those independents surveyed have largely been inactive on the web front. There are, however, bold moves by a small minority who claim to have doubled their online trade in just 12 months. A further eight per cent state growth has been significant.
What will profit channelled back into the business be spent on? 35 30
Store security......................................................9.0% Staff wage or hiring ......................................15.7%
Developing online trade ..............................33.7%
Expanding stock ..............................................24.7%
Paying off loans/supplier debts ................22.5%
Store vehicles ..................................................10.1%
Store redecorate/point of sale revamp ..30.3%
Interestingly, despite a rough year for many stores in terms of theft, this is not a priority investment area. Boosting online business tops the pile and no wonder – EPoS firms are making it easier and easier for the IBD to sell securely online. Do you foresee growth next year? None forecast ............................................7.6% Depends on economic conditions ..11.8% Anticipate slight growth......................27.8% I'm optimistic of growth and feel it to be achievable ................................................52.8%
Good to see a bit of optimism here. Under 20 per cent were pessimistic about what the next 12 months could hold. Three words: make it happen. Is your online presence as strong as it could be? Could you improve your marketing?
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 41
Retrospective The cycle industry has had an eventful year, from snow and ice freezing early year sales and posties being kicked off their bikes, to a surge in electric cycles, Boris bikes and the axe for Cycling England. Jonathon Harker takes a look at the stories that grabbed the bike trade’s attention over the past year...
January POST CHRISTMAS the cycle trade had to deal with a spell of particularly poor weather. Events were postponed – like Falcon’s Bristol launch – and High Streets were uncharacteristically quiet with consumers choosing to avoid frostbite by sticking it out at home. While some bike firms found an angle to make the
most of the weather – like Reece announcing the arrival of Schwalbe’s Snow Stud tyres in stock – overall sales for independent dealers dropped 17 per cent for the month, according to ACT statistics. Many dealers thankfully reported that sales after the bad weather made up for the early retail lull.
The head honchos at the Royal Mail were intent on making their post staff ‘safer’ by slashing bike use by postmen and women
Bad weather proves to be snow joke for independent bike retail
March THE BATTLE to keep Britain’s postmen and women on their bikes reached a head in March when outgoing Royal Mail chief exec Adam Crozier lit the touch paper with the words that cycles “posed a wider safety risk... where the rider is exposed to greater risks than other vehicle
February WHILE TESCO has long stocked bikes and accessories, the national retailer was revealed in February to be trialling ‘bike shops’ within seven outlets across the country. “These stores have a specific area for bikes and offered the option to have the bike assembled,” a spokesperson for the store told BikeBiz. “They have been very popular with customers who have appreciated having trained experts to help them pick the right bike and assemble it.“ Tesco also confirmed to BikeBiz that should the concept
users.” The statement crushed hopes that a petition in January might halt the cycle cull. But that didn’t stop the CTC from rallying the efforts of opponents to the plan. Urging the public to write to the Royal Mail’s new chief exec Moya Greene, the CTC promised to collect and deliver the letters to the Royal Mail HQ – delivered by cargo bike, naturally.
Best Buy opened six stores in the UK, all stocking a credible electric bike line-up
prove popular with its customers, it would roll the bike shop concept out to other outlets where appropriate. While the trade took a dim view of BSO selling antics, IBDs told BikeBiz that they didn’t see Tesco’s evolving bike retail proposition as a true threat to their trade.
Ubiquitous supermarket giant Tesco raised its cycle offering with a ‘bike shop within a shop’ trial
April AMERICAN retail giant Best Buy opened its first ever UK store in April and staked a claim in the increasingly attractive electric bike sector, carrying lights, helmets and accessories to boot. But Best Buy’s inaugural store in Lakeside, Thurrock, wasn’t just a flash in the electric bike pan: the retailer revealed that it was planning a further five store
openings before the end of the year – with all set to stock electric bikes – and to create 8,000 jobs in the UK in a long term plan spanning the next five years. Best Buy had an answer to that long held obstacle to the electric bike market too: service and support – with a dedicated ‘Geek Squad’ offering 24 hour support and advice.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 43
>> May POST-GENERAL Election we asked whether the new Coalition Government would bring good times to cycling. And the trade had good reason to be positive the Lib Dems had pledged to support IBDs with new measures, and the Coalition
claimed to be the greenest Government ever. Only a few months later, however, and Undersecretary for State Norman Baker confirmed cycling would no longer have its own pot of money, while Cabinet Secretary Francis Maude officially announced the news that Cycling England was to be axed.
Boris Bikes gave cycles a ‘hire’ profile in London in the summer
Despite pro-bike assurances from the Parties vying for power during the General Election, time was called on Cycling England in 2010
June WAS 2010’S Bike Week the biggest yet? That was what EDF hoped for with its Team Green Britain branded sponsorship of the mass participation cycling event. Through funded support, Bike Week saw more help provided for event organisers than ever before, and a higher profile for the long-established bikebacking week. Event workshops and guides were among the resources made
available. Events ran up and down the country with the aim to get bums on saddles. Cycling Scotland got in on the action with the able assistance of long-distance cyclist Mark Beaumont. Cycling England chief exec Ian Aitken said: “There’s something for everyone during Bike Week, with events ranging from cycle training and Dr Bike sessions for novices, to commuter challenges and group rides around local cycling routes.”
July LONDONERS woke up to a “new dawn for the bicycle” at the end of July, in the words of London Mayor Boris Johnson. He wasn’t far wrong either – with the launch of the Cycle Superhighways and the Cycle Hire scheme, the capital upped its cycle-friendly credentials like never before.
HMRC’s tinkering with the rules of the Cycle to Work initiative left some cycle retailers in a state of confusion
Long-distance cyclist Mark Beaumont was one of the famous cycle names supporting a now-backed-by EDF Energy Bike Week
August HMRC threw a spanner into the Cycle to Work salary sacrifice scheme in August with a set of new guidelines. The rule revision on ‘fair market value’ for the worth of a bicycle bought on the scheme was higher than previously, leading many in the industry – including those that have cited
Barclays Hire Scheme, or Boris’ bikes, as they were snappily nicknamed, proved popular from the off, according to TfL. Five thousand bikes were available from 315 docking stations at launch and, at time of press, Johnson had announced a further 2,000 bikes and 4,200 docking points for central and East London in time for the 2012 Olympics.
C2W as a key driver of growth for the cycle market – to fear for the future attractiveness of the scheme. Pre-empting the rule change, the largest C2W providers formed the Cycle to Work Alliance to back the scheme. Now the dust has settled on the change, those key providers have sought to calm fears and reassure retailers that the scheme is still viable and attractive.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 45
>> September SHOW SEASON started in earnest in September with probably the biggest bike show in the world. A larger Eurobike than ever saw almost every bike brand carry an electric bike model, and dedicated a zeppelin hanger to the growing sector. 41,000 trade visitors from 102 countries made the trip to Friedrichshafen this year, while the opening Demo Day also gained in popularity, attracting 1,732 journalists from 35 countries. In more statistical impressiveness, Eurobike saw a
whopping 300 product world premieres, cementing the show’s position as the essential global bike show, to the minds of many. Not even a paltry number of nearby hotels and an acute lack of direct flights to the area seem able to nobble the popularity of the show. In the words of project manager Stefan Reisinger: “The bicycle industry is showcasing in Friedrichshafen the entire range of products that it offers worldwide. Eurobike has once again impressively highlighted its standing as the global bicycle show.”
French sport retail collosus Decathlon made a bigger impression on the UK in 2010, with new stores opening in Northern Ireland, Reading and Birmingham
Charge shows off in style with all the fun of the trade fair at Eurobike
November WITH OVER 500 stores globally, French retailer Decathlon’s comparative lack of shops on these shores could arguably be seen as slightly baffling. This year, however, the firm did up the number of UK stores, with a 40,000 sq foot outlet in Northern Ireland (creating 60 jobs), a store in Reading and a
£15 million shop in Birmingham (pictured above with new store manager Anthony Kirkwood). The 50,000 sq ft Birmingham shop opened in November and stocks over 170,000 items and serves over 70 different sports – including cycling. Decathlon also moved into the United States this year after pulling out of the territory in 2006.
Will cycle retail till bells ring this Christmas season?
October PICKING UP where Eurobike left off, Cycle Show 2010 brought product debuts and launches over to the UK and, for the last time, to Earls Court. While it was Cycle Show’s last stand in London before it headed off to Birmingham’s NEC in 2011, that didn’t put off plenty of trade and consumer attendees – and cycle nut Lord Sugar – from attending. In fact, quite the opposite – consumer ticket sales jumped by 211
per cent ahead of the show’s opening. October was also the month that the first stand-alone BikeBiz Awards took place, celebrating the achievements of the bike industry over the past 12 months. Over 200 members of the trade squeezed into a packed Sway Bar in Holborn, London to mix with the movers and shakers of the biz, and to see who had been voted the cream of the cycle crop. October was busy as ever, with the UK’s largest bike event Cycle Show and the trade’s only award event the Bike Biz Awards
December CHRISTMAS, Christmas, Christmas. Whether the country is climbing out of recession or not, this December we’ll hear tills ringing, see credit cards wear thin and internet ordered parcels delivered by posties (by van, not bicycles). And while the High Street and online retailers are busy, and consumers up and
46 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
down the land complain about hearing too much from the likes of Slade, Wizard and Sir Cliff, bike manufacturers and distributors will continue to gear up to 2011 and prepare for the jam-packed show season in January and February. For views from the bike industry on the highlights and lowlights of 2010, turn over to page 13.
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48 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
BIKESOUP FOR BIKE DEALERS
ActSmart teams up with Bikesoup Now independent bike retailers can take advantage of Bikesoup – the new and used bike marketplace – to reach a wider range of customers. ActSmart explains how...
“For hard to shift bikes it is much cheaper and more efficient, time wise, than using Ebay...” JP Saville, Quest Adventure
BIKESOUP is now an official partner of ActSmart and is the UK’s freshest online new and used bike marketplace, offering a unique bike-specific ecommerce platform and low advertising rates. The website now allows all specialist cycle retailers the ability to reach a nationwide audience, thus competing on a level playing field with larger multiple retailers that have big marketing budgets. Recently launched to consumers, Bikesoup has already seen a great response from users – and now it’s time for the retailers to take advantage. Bikesoup has also been promoted to consumers on ACT’s website – www.thecyclingexperts.co.uk – and every retailer’s shop listing
on The Cycling Experts will feature a store’s entire Bikesoup stock list so consumers can see what dealers have to offer; alongside other services such as ride it away cycle finance. All retailers who upload their stock onto Bikesoup will benefit from extra promotion with a focussed national PR and marketing campaign beginning in January 2011. The website is intuitive and bikes can be uploaded in a matter of seconds via the bespoke dealer stock management system. Advert upload speeds will be further increased as bike manufacturers’ product catalogues are added to the site. Other Bikesoup innovations include a voucher system for shops to help their customers
sell their used bikes and a database of available bike boxes, which can be used by private sellers; reducing shop waste and driving more traffic directly into the shops, increasing walk-in sales revenue. Worthing-based bike shop Quest Adventure has been working directly with Bikesoup. The store’s JP Saville says of the partnership: “Bikesoup will be the perfect working partner for independent bike shops like mine, who would like to compete with the bigger retailers and achieve more sales, cost effectively. For ‘hard to shift’ bikes it is much cheaper and much more efficient, time wise, than using eBay.” Discounted rates are available to ActSmart members, ranging from ten per cent off for Bronze
to 20 per cent off for Gold and Platinum members. Bronze ActSmart subscription is free so sign up now to take advantage of this offer www.actsmart.biz/cycles. Bikesoup is offering all dealers a no-strings-attached, no obligation two months free advertising trial on the site www.bikesoup.co.uk For more information call ActSmart on 0845 618 7256, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Upload your stock to Bikesoup and get two months free advertising on the UK’s premier new and used bicycle marketplace. www.bikesoup.co.uk
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 49
PEOPLE AND RECRUITMENT Send your recruitment news to
Schofield takes up reins at Future Mueller replaces Engel at InMotionMar Groves in at Decade Europe Holmes heads for Mont Blanc
50 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
FUTURE PUBLISHING RICHARD SCHOFIELD has become group publishing director for Future’s sports and automotive portfolios. As head of the two groups, Schofield will oversee both business performance and commercial strategy. He previously worked as group publisher for automotive at Future since 2008. Prior to that Schofield was group publisher for sports, and led the early expansion of Future’s cycling portfolio into digital in 2007, now embodied in bikeradar.com and cyclingnews.com. Schofield replaces Peter Stothard, publishing director of the sports portfolio and will report to Future chief exec Mark
Wood. KATHERINE RADERECHT, group publisher for sports, will report to Schofield. “Richard brings a wealth of experience and an impressive track record to a new role overseeing both our sports and automotive sectors,” said Future UK’s chief exec MARK WOOD. “I see great potential to develop both print and digital businesses in this area and I know that Richard, backed by the outstanding team he now heads, will provide the kind of leadership we need to build on an already strong market position.” Schofield added: “I am tremendously excited to be given the chance to lead both of these market-leading portfolios. I am
looking forward to working with Katherine and the Sports team to accelerate the momentum in these fast growing sports markets and with the automotive team to strengthen our impressive range of events, websites and magazines.” INMOTION MAR STEPHANIE MUELLER has become PR coordinator at inMotion Mar.com. Mueller will look after the Sugoi and Hirzi brands at the marketing firm. With a sports diploma in sports marketing, Mueller has been an online editor at the Journalists-Academy Dr Hooffacker in Munich. Her first steps into the PR and marketing world were positions with
PEOPLE AND RECRUITMENT
People & Recruitment is Sponsored by Halfords
Stephanie Mueller German first league volleyball club Generali Hachung in Munich and with Spanish Football Club FC Seville. Mueller replaces Katrin Engel in the PR role at InMotion Mar. Engel has moved on to tackle new challenges in the wider sporting industry. Mueller can be contacted at email@example.com or on 07141 242362. DECADE EUROPE The distributor of Royal Racing, Urge Helmets, No Fear, Brake Authority and EVS protection has recruited CRAIG GROVES to manage southern area sales. Starting with Decade last month, Groves handles key accounts in the south of England. Prior to his appointment Groves managed the successful Trail Junkies independent bike dealer near Reading, and boasts over ten years in the bike industry.
Mike Holmes BIKEBIZ.COM
Commenting on the appointment, MATT YEO, general manager at Decade, said: “We have had a phenomenally positive reaction to the launch of our 2011 ranges. It seems that the mountain bike market is ready for some up-to-date thinking and our products have some very interesting and fresh ideas in sectors such as protection and apparel that seem to have struggled for inspiration over the last few years. “We’re lucky to have Craig on board and we think he is up to the job of challenging customers’ perceptions when it comes to the brands that we manage and the sectors we cover. He will be making contact with key independent bike dealers in the coming weeks to demonstrate the new lines and talk through the comprehensive advertising and marketing campaign we have set into action. Craig is the first of a team and we are still in the process of staffing up so watch this space.” Craig can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01792 469811. MONT BLANC MIKE HOLMES has joined Mont Blanc UK as its new general manager. Holmes has 25 years experience in sales and marketing and joins from GW International where he successfully grew the brand. Holmes’ appointment follows managing director IAN GRAHAM’s decision to retire after spending 12 years at the company. PER EKHOLM, chief executive officer for Mont Blanc Group, said: “We are very excited that Mike Holmes will be joining the Mont Blanc team.”
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 51
52 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
The trade’s guide to sourcing stock, up-and-coming IBDs and the very latest products
ALARM BELLS ARE ringing this month. Reflecting on the numerous articles in the mainstream press about cycling becoming accessible and attractive to the masses, I had the notion that we might not be ready. By we, I’m siding with the independent stores, for which many find business often challenging and complicated, especially in comparison to those discounters who get an easy ride with the uneducated newbie. Why do I feel independents to be vulnerable to letting what could be a huge opportunity for growth slide? Largely, it’s down to indications of lacklustre marketing techniques by the smaller store. It could be argued that this is a resource issue. Some stores may not have the budget for the latest ‘do it all’ EPoS kit that email blasts customers on a regular basis. In fact, the response to our retail survey – targeting solely independent stores – suggests only around 28 per cent of IBDs utilise email as a marketing device.
“The thing about word of mouth marketing is that it relies on others to create a message to be relayed. Essentially, that’s like playing Chinese Whispers, starting with a handful of fortune cookies...” More worrying than that statistic is the fact that 81 per cent of those asked about their advertising tactics stated that they relied on ‘word of mouth’. The thing about word of mouth is it relies on others to create a message to be relayed. Essentially, that’s like playing Chinese Whispers, beginning with a handful of fortune cookies. Not every message that gets out will be positive, for starters. And those that sing your praises can easily become distorted if your message is not in your hands throughout. A unanimous conclusion was reached on the BikeBiz forum that the Yellow Pages are dead and buried. When reading the thread I was ready to defend the directory. That was until I realised its been several years since a copy has been in my hands. The next best thing then, surely, is Google? Correct, but you’d be surprised how much information is listed incorrectly here. Mystery Shopper encountered the problem twice on his travels this month alone. Time was wasted. Virtual customers got irate and gave bad reviews on page 18. I can imagine a typical customer would generate some negative word of mouth on the back of a wasted journey. All of this is, of course, avoidable with two minutes spent updating the world’s largest free-of-charge directory. Can your customers find you? And, will a newbie want to... Mark.Sutton@intentmedia.co.uk
IN THIS MONTH’S ISSUE NEW PRODUCTS
Keep an eye on the latest product landing on UK shore on page 57. Time for a final stock up before Christmas?
WHEELS, RUBBER AND PUMPS
This month we’ve got the product highlights of 16 distributors covering wheels, tyres, tubes and inflation...
The long-running verbal exchanges between the nation’s top training academies reaches a conclusion on 64...
The new X0 family featuring the best of each world: Avids full featured brake technologies - Truvativ carbon cranks with fastest X-Glide front shifting and 10 speed X0 drivetrain, taking advantage of proven XX technologies. SRAM2X10.COM Distribution in the UK: Fisher Outdoor Leisure LTD, www.ďŹ sheroutdoor.co.uk
Road and tri experts Telephone: 020 8943 4433 Email: www.sigmasport.co.uk
Opening times Monday to Friday 8am to 5.30pm (Monday and Thursday open ‘till 8pm); Saturday 9am to 5.30pm; closed Sunday Address: 15 High Street, Hampton Wick, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, KT1 4DA
Having opened its new flagship store in Kingston last month, and with a ‘concept store’ on the way in December, Sigma Sport has certainly got plenty to talk about, as Jonathon Harker found out when he spoke to Sigma’s Dan Duguid... Can you give us some history behind Sigma Sport? Sigma Sport has come a long way from its humble beginnings 18 years ago and has evolved into one of the most respected names in road cycling and triathlon retail in the UK. Our goal is simple, to offer a one-stop service providing the most comprehensive range of products and services under one roof and a retail experience that is second to none. Focusing on customer service, every staff member has a high level of knowledge and with each bike sale the customer receives a basic bike fit to ensure that the customer leaves with a good fit on their new bicycle. In what way does Sigma get involved in events? Sigma Sport has sponsored world-class triathletes such as Tim Don and Richard Stannard and also currently runs its own UCI Pro Continental cycling team, Sigma Sport – Specialized
(pictured above), which has competed at the Tour of Britain and Tour Series events in the UK. You launched a new flagship store in November in Hampton Wick, Kingston. Can you fill us in on the details? Our new store has some 3,000 sq ft of retail space per floor and now has 14 members of staff plus four full-time Cytech qualified mechanics. The new store also has longer opening hours, with an early opening time of 8am on weekdays and late night opening till 8pm on Mondays and Thursdays. The ground store will have a comprehensive range of parts and accessories and bicycles from Specialized, Trek with a dedicated Project One area and Wilier. The majority of our wheel range will also feature on the ground floor. Adding a new level of service, there is a dedicated workshop reception and wheel building area, along with a secure customer bike park.
“Sigma Sport is now a place to come to find your perfect bike, improve your current one, book a cycling holiday, service your bike and get a massage.” Dan Duguid
On the second and top floor there is a new workshop with the latest tooling and equipment. The first floor has a large and comprehensive clothing, shoes and helmet collection. A dedicated Triathlon zone caters for all levels of triathletes and is where you will find the TT and Tri bikes from Argon 18, Cervelo and Felt, along with our performance wheel zone. We have a specialist Italian area for Colnago, carrying 14 frames in stock to show the varied colours of Colnago. Pinarello will also feature in this area. What services does the flagship store offer? Cycling holiday and events company La Fuga will also run from the store and will share the Club Room for in-store presentations and seminars. A treatment room will cover everything from coaching by professional coach, Richard Simmonds, Sports massage from
Bridget Lucas and Sports massage and Osteopathy by Murat Ertuk. For our customers who drop their bikes off in the morning and require a shower before heading to work there are also female and male WC and shower rooms. A lounge area with TV, complimentary Wi-Fi and refreshments is also on hand to increase the retail experience. Also on this floor are two BG Fit rooms, one being camera equipped – a UK first. Sigma Sport is now a place to come to find your perfect bike, improve your current one, book a cycling holiday, service your bike, get a massage – and all in a single visit. What’s coming up in the next few months for Sigma? We have a new website being launched with the shop which is looking to be quite impressive (www.sigmasport.co.uk) and we have a concept store due to open in December.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 55
Featuring some of the latest brand spanking new product available to dealers, BikeBiz covers off Scoop’s first drop of Vocal, smokin’ Straitline gear and more...
Gravity Light Mega Exo crank set Windwave 02392 505320
Hebie Boot Bag AMBA Marketing 01392 829903
Vocal components Scoop 01462 650741
GRAVITY has released a highly competitive crankset for the coming season, the £219.95 Light Mega Exo. Hollow forged crankarms result in superior strength and stiffness, resulting in a higher strengthto-weight ratio compared to solid arms. A translucent tough polycarbonate bashguard, also sold separately through Windwave, comes with the package, further adding to the system's tough credentials. Another boast of the crankset's longevity are the CrMo pedal inserts. Three sizes – 165, 170 and 175mm are available, along with either 68/73 or 833mm BB shells.
HEBIE first showed BikeBiz its ‘bike basket replacing’ Boot Bag at this year's Cycle Show, pitching it as the perfect bag for the age of 'urban mobility'. The shoulder bag has its own proprietary Quicksnap fix system, which means the bag can be easily snapped on and off a bike’s carrier. It is also possible to integrate the bootbag with non Quicksnap systems. Off the bike, the Bootbag stylishly slings over the shoulder, or can be carried via the built-in handle. Coming constructed from either a budget-friendly plastic, or high-value Argentine leather, the Bootbag comes in eight colours and can hold up to 30-litres.
SCOOP now has the majority of the Vocal components line in stock and ready for order. The budget BMX components line covers everything from handlebars, headsets and spacers, cables, cable straps and sticker packs. Stocks of the Screech brake pads and the brand's plain and doublebutted spokes are also now re-stocked. The Vocal ‘Local’ handlebar is a 4130 chromo, 13butted bar with an 8.25-inch rise and 29 inches of width. This is Vocal’s pro end bar and weighs only 706 grams. The Local will be available in black, white and chrome for just £44.99.
Pendle Hang Up Holder Pendle 01282 699 555
Straitline 'smoke effect' Hotlines 0131 319 1444
KCNC R3 headset Clee Cycles 01746 712882
PENDLE'S line of indoor rack solutions has been updated with three new versions of the Hang Up Holder. The tough plastic-coated steel hook is designed to protect the rim and prevent spoke damage. Assembly is easy with just a few snap together components. When screwed into the wall, the fastenings are hidden for a clean finish. Each of the three versions is available in either silver or black. The standard hook costs just £17.84 at retail, while a medium size version providing a tyre holder for wall clearance comes in at £25.72.
CANADIAN components brand Straightline has added a new finish to many products in its already colourful line – the 'smoke effect'. BikeBiz was also pointed to the Straitline 'Silent Guides', a product of several years tweaking. Selflubricating elastomeric guides mean that the chain guide runs totally silent and friction free. The 7075 T6 aluminium bashguard is drilled out to achieve a massive weight saving on old designs, though does not compromise strength. The system comes in both 32 to 36 tooth and 36 to 40 tooth designs. ISCG and ISCG '05 versions are available.
AT £109.99, they're not the cheapest headset solutions on the market though KCNC's R3 external headset, with an integrated stainless steel bearing and cup design, might be one for the performance cyclist seeking a colourmatched set of cups. The cups are machined from stainless steel and TiN (titanium nitride) coated for low rolling friction and wear resistance. This cup then forms the outer race of the bearing with the stainless balls and stainless inner race inside. This gives a very neat low 21mm stack, lightweight (71g) external bearing headset that should last years.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 57
Wheel -Tyre Systems for higher performance All 2011 Mavic SSC wheelsets have been developed with speciďŹ c tyres to elevate the overall performance of the system. This innovative approach controls the variables between wheel and tyre interface, increases aerodynamics and opens a bold new era in terms of wheel performance. Cosmic Carbone 80, Cosmic Carbone SLR, Cosmic Carbone Ultimate, R-Sys SLR, Ksyrium SLR
Mavic SSC Wheel-Tyre Systems are tested and developed with team Garmin Transitions.
WHEELS, TYRES, TUBES AND PUMPS
On a roll… No one’s going anywhere without a set of inflated wheels on their bike, but there’s so much choice on the market for retailers in need of stock, so how do you know which firms do what? Mark Sutton calls on the nation’s distributors to highlight a few of their hot products to keep your business on a roll…
2pure CRANK BROTHERS claim to have ‘reinvented of the wheel’ with the Cobalt series. The design of the new wheelsets eliminates the need to drill any holes in the rim, replacing them instead with a unique extruded internal/external radial centre rib. The un-drilled rim is a lot stronger and is also inherently suitable for tubeless tyres. Spokes are attached to the central rib section in matched pairs to more evenly distribute the tension from each spoke and allow for easier truing, which can be done with a standard spoke key. The aluminium freehub body on the rear hub features six
pawls in two sets of three engaging 48 times every wheel revolution to ensure near instantaneous pickup. Four different models are available to cover a range of riding disciplines. Each pair is handbuilt. 0844 811 2001
Bohle SCHWALBE’S Durano is fast becoming a favourite, particularly with singlespeeders. Fluorescent green and either nostalgic cream, or brown will complement the look of a single-speed bike, many of which already sport a retro-look. The tyres come reinforced with an
CONTINENTAL’S Baron tyre with Black Chilli compound is designed as an all-year-round aggressive freerider, and has some cheaper standard compound options to suit all pockets. It’s a tyre that Singletrack magazine recently hailed “probably the best wet conditions, aggressive trail riding tyre around”. Utilising the very same tread pattern of the race proven ‘Der Baron’ downhill rubber, the Baron is lighter and again makes the most of Conti’s Black Chilli technology, all within a foldable package carrying tough Apex sidewalls. The tread rolls fast too, meaning riders should feel their efforts rewarded, even if the ground is loose underneath. 01970 626777
COYOTE SPORTS offers a wide range of wheels satisfying the majority of niches and these come from UK firm Wilkinson Wheels, Skyway, Crosser and the in-house Coyote brand. The distributor’s catalogue exclusively contains the Skyway range of Mag Wheels, profiled on page 30. The firm even carries stock of a comprehensive line of mountain bike solutions, offering a variety of stock packages with fronts, rears and pairs, all in an abundance of colour options. Fixie-suited wheels with flip-flop hubs are also stocked in pairs, with colour options of green, white, silver and black. A competitively priced range of own brand inner tubes, in all the most popular sizes, are carried at Coyote. 01473 652768
additional rubber layer designed to provide puncture resistance and durability. An extra durable version of the Durano is also available via Schwalbe’s many distributors. This model, the Durano Skid, is ideal for sports such as bike polo where short sharp stops are commonplace. The Skid has a thick layer of robust, touring tyre, tread compound that can withstand real abuse – braking by locking the rear wheel – for a much longer time. The manufacturer has also boosted the inner strength of its MTB tyres for 2011, introducing the Triple Star compounds. The Pacestar, Trailstar and Vertstar compounds are suited to crosscountry, freeride and downhill, respectively. 01952 602680
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 59
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WHEELS, TYRES, TUBES AND PUMPS
Fisher Outdoor Leisure
Fyxation FYXATION has expanded on its popular Session 700 tyre platform for 2011 with three sizes now available, 700x23, 28 and 35c.
FISHER OUTDOOR LEISURE launched its Airace range of track and minipumps this year and already the brand has bagged plenty of consumer magazine recognition. The all-new Speed F2 portable mini floor pump comes with an extendable hose and a foldable handle and is rated up to 140psi maximum pressure to cope with any trail or road side emergency. The comprehensive offering of track pumps includes the do-it-all Infinity AS, perfect for mountain bikers with its integrated shock pump adaptor and 300psi high-pressure capability. There are three other non-shock Infinity track pumps that share the high volume/ high pressure capability and sleek looks. 01727 798345
Jim Walker FULCRUM is well known for its road offerings, but over the last few years the firm has been developing some innovative products for the off-road scene too. Fulcrum’s range of Red Metal offroad wheelsets have had their capabilities tested and proven by the likes of Julian Absolan Multi-Time World XC Champion. One of the firm’s latest models is the Red Metal Three, which features stand-out graphics, lightweight, but stiff machined rims and all the usual high quality technical features expected from Fulcrum’s
Designed with single speed and commuters in mind, Session 700 tires are built to take on the perils of road riding. Built tough with 120tpi casing, foldable bead and Kevlar rolling protection, the Session 700 combines performance and style, much thanks to the many colourful designs available. To complement the tyre line, Fyxation also offers colour-matched track grips, BMX grips, as well as alloy end plugs. 414-5107612
RECENT PARTS and accessory brand of the year award winner Hope now has 28 differing combinations of its UKmade wheelsets. Taking advantage of its in-house wheel building facility, in which Hope has just invested £200,000, the manufacturer is producing top-end wheels, such as the Hoop. With such a wide catalogue of wheels available, retailers can even source reasonably priced replacement wheels to satisfy customers who have blown out an old wheel, but don’t have the funds to splash on a performance solution. Hope will be at the Core Bike show next month and is asking retailers to swing by its booth to discuss what its catalogue can offer your business. 01282 851200
HALO is Ison’s in-house wheels brand offering an extensive range of rims, hubs, wheels, tyres, spokes and inner tubes covering just about every type of bike from road racing to MTB to fixed gear. Tested through numerous dirt jump competitions this year, the Chaos is Sam Pilgrim’s signature wheelset. Halo’s heat-treated Chaos rim is both strong and light and pitched as light enough for professional dirt use, but more than capable of holding its own on a downhill track. Double-butted spokes add to the wheels’ strength credentials, while Spin Doctor hubs come disc ready, if preferred. Retailers should also look out for the T2 wheels, due shortly. At just £85 for the rear wheel, the T2 is a great value solution to on a budget off-roaders. 01353 662662
engineering programmes. However, for 2011 the Red Metal Three also sees 15mm front and 142/12mm rear adaptor kits included in the package. The wheelset weighs just 1,685g, retails for only £399 and is fully UST tubeless compatible. 01323 445155
Jungle Products IF IT’S A wheelset capable of sustained cross country and marathon use that your customer seeks, check out Jungle Product’s catalogue where you’ll find the Syncros FL Carbon wheels. At £1,430 a pair, the carbon monocoque rims provide a stiff, efficient power transfer. At 25mm wide and housing 28 DT Comp spokes, the wheels will hold clincher tyres. FL hubs featuring the Enduro Double Row Angular Contact Bearing System give a smooth ride. Syncros also produces a tyre, also dubbed the FL, which would be at home on the wheelset. Suited to marathons and heavy cross country use, the FL is hard wearing and uses the latest in compound technology to label itself an all-conditions tyre. 01423 780 088
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 61
WHEELS, TYRES, TUBES AND PUMPS
Madison AS WITH all Blackburn products, the pump line comes with a no-hassle lifetime guarantee. For this year, distributor Madison feel the Blackburn SL to be one of the likely big sellers in the line going forward, largely thanks to the slimline pumps’ impressive spec sheet. Capable of inflating a tyre to 160 PSI, the 59-gram pump is designed exclusively to satisfy
roadies, compatible solely with Presta valves. The unique double-chamber design uses both the shaft and the barrel to increase the volume of air intake and the manufacturer claims the output to be up to 37 per cent higher than similar models from the competition. A frame mount is included in each box. Shimano’s wide-ranging wheel line is also available from Madison. 0208 385 3385
Moore Large NEW COMPONENT brand One23 has introduced and extensive pump range this year. The range features frame fit, track, mini-track, Co2, mini and suspension pumps. Retail prices range from £17.99 to £39.99. Moore Large also carries a comprehensive range of Beto pumps covering the £6.49 to £32.99 retail price points.
Raleigh RALEIGH distributes five different tyre and tube brands besides its own, including Michelin, Schwalbe, CST, Dutch perfect and DiamondBack. For 2011, Michelin’s road range gets a make over with the new Dynamic Sport, Dynamic classic and the City range receiving the addition of what is
described as the ‘revolutionary’ Protek Max puncture-resistant tecnology, available for both 700c and 26-inch wheel sizes. Raleigh has handbuilt wheels at its Nottingham base for over 120 years now, so if your store is in need of a replacement wheel, or a performance wheelset for any bike, the distributor recommends getting in touch. 01773 532600
Sport Direct SPORT DIRECT launched its Aero Sport tyre and tube line this spring and is now seeking to raise awareness of the brand with retailers nationwide. The tyre line covers MTB, jump, BMX, road and city bicycles and come with brand colour sidewall decals, colour
Walkers Cycles BRINGING Serfas comprehensive line to the UK in increasingly large quantities, Walkers Cycles can offer the bicycle dealer with a wide range of inflation accessories. The Road Stick is one such item highlighted by Walkers as being a top-seller. Costing £14.95 and capable of injecting 100 PSI into anything equip with a Schrader or Presta valve, the pump is ideal for jersey pockets or frame mounts. Serfas floor pumps are now available in six colours for just £29.95. The FP-
62 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
Rodi manufactured, wheel brand BlackJack specialises in aluminium extrusions and are able to offer a comprehensive range of mid to high-end level wheelsets covering most sectors. Assembled using Formula hubs and offering a wide choice of sleeved or welded rims, this hand-finished range of wheel sets has something to suit every rider’s needs. Blackjack wheelsets retail from £189.99 up to £529.00. 01332 274200
200 floor pump carries an ergonomic handle, a durable barrel and base, resulting in a package capable of putting out 160 PSI of pressure. All Serfas product comes with a lifetime warranty. 01162 833885
Zyro A NEW ‘all condition’ Cedric Gracia signature tyre is now in stock with Zyro, available in a 2.35 width, as well as a ‘soft condition’ model in both 2.10 and 2.25. Also on the way shortly, Panaracer are to introduce two 29er suited Gracia signature models and a UST tubeless multicondition tyre at 2.35 inches wide. If your shop needs a top-level pump, or your customer has a decent budget for a track pump, then check out Genuine Innovation’s Campione floor pump at
descriptive consumer labels, are fully bar coded and part numbered. Meanwhile, the Butyl tubes are quality tested via a 24-hour inflation process and valves are tested at random as part of the stringent quality control. Sizes range from 12 to 26-inch and Presta valves are available for 26 to 700c tubes. 0845 2693069
£69.99. The large, low-mounted gauge extends to 260 PSI, while an extra long hose and a heavy duty Presta-ready brass head with a Schraeder adapter makes the Campione one desirable piece of kit. 01845 521700
2pure 0844 811 2001 www.2pure.co.uk
Eurobike Ltd 01332 774796 www.eurobike.uk.com
Otagocyclesport 07939 543016 www.otagocyclesport. co.uk
Seventies 0845 3103670 www.seventies.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
Abacus Online Ltd 0151 342 9799 www.abacusonline.net EPOS
Ascend Retail Management System 01908 280667 www.ascendrms.com EPOS
Fat Spanner 07966401165 www.fatspannerworld. com
Pacific Cycles Inc +886 34861231 www.pacific-cycles.com
Fisher Outdoor Leisure 01727 798345 www.fisheroutdoor.co.uk
Paligap Ltd 01454 313116 www.paligapltd.co.uk
Hotlines Europe Ltd 0131 3191444 www.hotlines-uk.com DISTRIBUTOR
Cube Bikes Uk Ltd www.cube.eu 0031 180441350 DISTRIBUTOR
Custom Sports Clothing Ltd 07580 495881 www.customsports clothing.com MANUFACTURER/DISTRIBUTOR
Cybertill Ltd 0800 0304432 www.cybertill.co.uk EPOS
Cycle Division Ltd 0845 0508500 www.thecycledivision. com WHOLESALER/DISTRIBUTOR
The Cycle Show 0207 2886733 www.cycleshow.co.uk EVENT/EXHIBITION ORGANISER
Digital Retail Solutions Inc 001 8003229471 www.digitalretailer.com EPOS
Hykeham Wholesale Limited 01522 801550 www.hykehamwholesale. co.uk DISTRIBUTOR/WHOLESALER
Jungle Products Ltd 01423 780088 www.jungleproducts.co.uk www.santacruzbikes.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
Lyon Equipment 01539 625493 www.lyon.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
Monterey Industries Ltd 0117 9509499 www.masibikes.com www.brevm.com DISTRIBUTOR/MANUFACTURER
Mojo suspension Hoodoo ltd 01633 615815 www.mojo.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
Moore Large and Co Ltd 01332 274252 www.moorelarge.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
SKS +49 2333831246 www.sks-germany.com MANUFACTURER
Parklife (Havant) Ltd 02392 475895
Sonic Cycles 0207 2432848 www.soniccycles.co.uk/b2b
Pashley Cycles 01789 292263 www.pashley.co.uk
Sport Direct Ltd 0845 2693060 www.sport-direct.co.uk
Peter Dobbs Design and Print Services 01482 224007
Stormfront Technology Ltd 0800 6121044 www.stormfront.co.uk
MANUFACTURER/DESIGN & PRINT SERVICES
Bohle UK Ltd 01952 602680 www.schwalbe.co.uk
Silverfish UK Ltd 01752 843882 www.silverfish-uk.com
Qoroz 01453 889204 www.qoroz.co.uk MANUFACTURER
Raleigh UK Ltd 01773 532600 www.raleigh.co.uk www.cyclelife.com DISTRIBUTOR
Red Cloud MC 01767 692831 www.redcloudmc.com MARKETING, PR & EVENTS
Reece Cycles PLC 0121 6220180 www.reececycles.co.uk
Trek Bicycle Corporation 01908 282626 MANUFACTURER
USE Ltd 01798 344477 www.exposurelights.com www.use1.com MANUFACTURER/DISTRIBUTOR
Vigour Corporation 0092 524269920 www.vigourcorporation.com MANUFACTURER/EXPORTER
Walkers Cycle Components Ltd 0116 2833885 www.walkerscycles.co.uk WHOLESALER/DISTRIBUTOR
Saddleback Ltd 01454 299965 www.saddleback.co.uk
Zyro Ltd 01845 521700 www.zyro.co.uk DISTRIBUTOR
To order copies of BikeBiz Bible or ensure inclusion in the 2011 edition please contact Gemma.Messina@intentmedia.co.uk
BikeBiz is keen to publish your opinions, whether they’re from letters, emails or via BikeBiz.com...
FOLLOWING LAST month’s letter I feel I can go ahead with some response to Nicholas Lumb and his comments. I have no intention of creating a hostile atmosphere and I would hope that all we do is for the benefit of those we are trying (and succeeding) to help folks wanting to enhance their futures in the trade. I felt it was most unprofessional and unworthy of an officer, under the umbrella of the excellent associations of ACT and ATG, to slag off other companies. Let me 'correct' some of the points on our operation and teachings. It was me that initiated the setting up of the NVQ for bike mechanics. Teresa and I were the very first to be awarded our D32 and D33 for bicycle mechanics. Despite the 'dumbing down' of the modules I wrote for C&G, it still leaves it above Cytech levels one and two in quality of instruction and content. Some of
64 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
the content we have in C&G level two (and which we feel should be included as such), Cytech has in its level three. The one regret that Teresa and I have is that C&G still have not augmented the new modules, despite all the work gone into producing them. Teresa and I started teaching quality bike mechanics as full courses in June 1991. That is some years before ACT and ATG commenced their courses. Between us we have 40 years experience plus 34 years at retail. We have appointed our own 'Certificate of Attainment' which has been completely accepted by students. It was because not only were we working at that level and C&G not wanting a 'level 3' that induced us to do it. Our courses are very successful and always full, (overbooked) so we feel we are doing it right. Regards and respects Alf Webb
Whatever the outcome it should benefit students...
“Let’s play n As one of the few women working in the cycle industry, I would like to try and sprinkle a little bit of feminine wisdom over this small, ongoing battle of the letters pages and say BOYS, PLEASE CAN WE KEEP THINGS NICE!
Julia Lally, Codirector at Cycle Systems
COMMENTS such as "dumbed down" and "ego-massaging" in the last issue, and criticising our students for their appearance several issues before that, only serve to make the organisations saying such things look bad. As a director of Cycle Systems, I feel the quality of our brand and the history and quality of City and Guilds speaks for itself and do not want to defend these things here. What I would like to challenge however, is the assertion made by ATG that Cytech is the "trade standard" in cycle mechanic training. This is like saying that cornflakes are the only type of breakfast. Cytech is just a brand name – one that has enjoyed exclusive access to the training
Star Letter Whether it’s a hand-written, sent-through-the-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 receive Oxford’s Ultra Torch 9. Part of Oxford’s top selling range of LEDs and lights, the front light has nine ultra bright diodes, a quick release mounting bracket and comes complete with batteries. The sturdy aluminium body makes it ideal for general purpose use as a compact torch. The rear LED has 3 modes, 7 diodes and a universal mounting bracket.
Mail to: Saxon House, 6A St. Andrews Street, Hertford, Hertfordshire SG14 1JA
Email: Jonathon.Harker@ intentmedia.co.uk
nicely...” market, yes, but the market is opening up. It’s worth noting that the NVQs now offered by Cycle Systems Academy and Havering College are the same engineering units, awarded by the same academic body as ATG's Cytech. Nuances of the quality of delivery are something that both organisations will, and should, argue over. I have genuinely heard lots of things about ATG's training – from people who would not use anything else to those who do not feel Cytech is worth the paper it is written on. But it is not my job to do anyone down. Business is business. There is nothing personal in it. I have also met two or three people from ATG and they were all decent, hardworking and as passionate as what they do as us at Cycle Systems. I know it is annoying when other companies move on your market space. But that is the game we are all playing. On that note, I feel the ‘gentlemanly’ response to ATG's letter would be to wish them success in their training business. Just not every bit of training success out there. Julia Lally Director Cycle Systems Ltd
In response... The ATG’s Senior Cycle Assessor proposes an ACT-organised annual meet on training standardisation – could this be the answer?
“We should endeavour to strengthen our industry award. I propose all training providers have input and agreement on this standard.” Nicholas Lumb
PEOPLE SAY that debate is good. My original letter to BikeBiz was intended to highlight the differences that can exist between awards from different providers and it is good that we are now discussing the subject. It goes without saying that if we could draw all the awards in line then they would all achieve the same credibility and value as well as offering a sought after industry-wide benchmark that would benefit everyone. This process would create standardisation. At ATG we have worked with our awarding body (EAL) for many years and have to abide by their rigid rules on quality assurance. Part of this involves making sure that the assessment decisions made by our assessors are all the same – or are standardised. We are delighted that Cycle Systems have arrived at the same decision as ourselves and decided to work with EAL.
This means that they will also have the same standards of quality assurance and standardisation. Whether this was done knowingly, or by chance, this is great news for the industry because the same standards will now be applied more widely. ATG Training has always been confident that we are working in the best interests of the individuals in the cycle industry as well as the industry as a whole. This was confirmed and commended in our recent Ofsted inspection where the lead inspector has asked to use ATG as an exemplar company in a subsequent paper that is being written on partnerships between training providers and other industry partners. The Cytech brand is owned by the ACT and is the industry’s own standard. This can be proved by the large number of mechanics who have achieved
the award, making it the prevalent and most respected qualification in cycle mechanics. To a certain extent it is one of the jewels of our industry. As with NVQs it would be good if this award was also standardised. We should endeavour to strengthen our industry award rather than bring it down by dispute and squabbling. I propose that all training providers have input and agreement on this standard and would ask that the ACT consider arranging for this to happen by having a regular (annual or biannual?) standardisation meetings. As I said earlier, debate is good and if improvement comes from that debate then it is even better. Nicholas Lumb Senior Cycle Assessor. ATG Training
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 65
EVENTS AND EDITORIAL PLANNER
CORE BIKE Sunday January 30th-Feb 1st Whittlebury Hall, Northants
WORKSHOP CLEANING, TOOLS AND TRAINING CORE BIKE SPECIAL Editorial Deadline: December 3rd
Advertising Deadline: December 7th
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
FEBRUARY 2011 Commuting: Folding Bikes, Helmets, Reflective Clothing and Accessories IceBike* Fisher Outdoor Leisure Expo Editorial Deadline: Jan 21st Advertising Deadline: Jan 27th
MARCH 2011 Cycle Media Analysis: Mags and Websites Electric Bikes Editorial Deadline: Feb 18th Advertising Deadline: Feb 23rd
APRIL 2011 Bike Security Cycle Fashion: Clothing, Sunglasses, Watches and Accessories UK’s Top 20 IBDs Editorial Deadline: Mar 11th Advertising Deadline: Mar 16th
MAY 2011 Energy and Nutrition, Bottles and Cages Women: Bikes, Clothing and Accessories Cycle Trade Expo Editorial Deadline: Apr 8th Advertising Deadline: April 13th
JUNE 2011 Electronic Point of Sale Cycle Computers Editorial Deadline: May 6th Advertising Deadline: May 11th
JULY 2011 BMX: Bikes, Protective Clothing,Grips & Accessories P&A: Forks, Gears, Brakes & Chains Cycle Luggage: Panniers, Cases & Bags Editorial Deadline: June 3rd Advertising Deadline: June 8th
THE BIBLE IS BACK! 66 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
December 2010 TAICHUNG BIKE WEEK 2010 Saturday December 4th – 8th Taichung, Taiwan taichung-bike-week.com
January 2011 LONDON BIKE SHOW Thursday January 13th – 16th ExCeL Centre www.outdoorsshowextra.co. uk/the-london-bike-show CORE BIKE 2011 Sunday January 30th – Feb 1st Whittlebury Hall, Northants www.corebike.co.uk
February 2011 FISHER OUTDOOR LEISURE EXPO 2011 Sunday February 20th – 22nd Sopwell House, St Albans www.fisherexpo.co.uk ICEBIKE SUMMER 2011 Tuesday February 22nd – 24th Milton Keynes www.icebike.co.uk NORTH AMERICAN HANDMADE BIKE SHOW Friday February 25th – 27th Austin Convention Centre handmadebicycleshow.com
March 2011 TAIPEI CYCLE SHOW 2011 Wednesday March 16th – 19th TWTC Nangang Exhibition Hall, Taipei www.taipeicycle.com.tw
April 2011 SEA OTTER CLASSIC 2011 Thursday April 14th – 17th Monterey, California www.seaotterclassic.com THE SCOTTISH BIKE SHOW 2011 Saturday April 16th – 17th Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Glasgow thescottishbikeshow.com UK HANDMADE AND BOUTIQUE BICYCLE SHOW Saturday April 28th – May1st Passenger Shed, Bristol www.bespokedbicycle.co.uk
May 2011 UCI CROSS COUNTRY MOUNTAIN BIKE WORLD CUP Saturday May 21st – 22nd Dalby Forest, Yorkshire britishcycling.org.uk/ mtbworld-2010
For more cycle trade dates: www.bikebiz.com/events
For additional copies please contact: Gemma.Messina@intentmedia.co.uk BIKEBIZ.COM
BIKEBIZ MARKETPLACE TO ADVERTISE IN THESE PAGES PLEASE CALL CARLY BAILEY ON 01992 535647
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. Your presence in this section ensures that your company’s details are easily found, keeping you one step ahead of your competitors.
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 Marketplac
Quartere PRaates: ge
To get your company featured here contact:
Carly Bailey on 01992 535647 or
MARKETPLACE CONTACTS BIKES & ACCESSORIES
PRINT & DESIGN SERVICES
01908 326 000
01454 313 116
The Cycle Division
0845 0508 500
BIKE MAINTENANCE Weldtite
01652 660 000
01282 699 555
0845 2303 799
0117 972 4730
0844 811 2001
Cycle Systems Academy
01296 737 800
weldtite.co.uk RESPRAYS & REPAIRS
BMX PARTS & ACCESSORIES Seventies
Argos 0845 310 3670
seventies.co.uk REPAIRS & STORAGE
Bob Elliot & Co Ltd
01772 459 887
Pace cycles Ltd
01723 867 919
01798 344 477
0151 342 9799
0845 603 9254
0845 602 9267
0845 644 9424
08709 771 550
01798 344 477
0116 267 5145
LIGHTING Exposure Lights
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 67
COMPANY PROFILE DOUG HUDSON, FOUNDER, FEEDBACK SPORTS
Give us a brief history of the firm: I started Feedback Sports in 2004 here in Golden, Colorado with my development of the Alpine digital hanging scale to weigh bicycles. Early on, the scales were successfully distributed through another Colorado company named Ultimate Bike Support, which we acquired in 2008 to add work stands and storage stands to the Feedback Sports product mix. With our solid base of unique products, we are growing rapidly through continuously improving sales, marketing and operational efforts. What can you offer the retailer? We offer the bicycle retailer three product segments to sell to their customers: work stands, storage stands and measurement tools. Our popular portable bicycle work stands are consumer driven, with a broad range of price points and features for the entry-level home mechanic all the way to the professional mechanic. The storage/display stands are equally useful to the bike shop as they are to the home user. Our one-bike RAKK stand and Velo Cache free-standing rack are
TEL: 0844 811 2001 WEB: www.feedbacksports.com
great to display bikes in a shop. The measurement tools like the digital scales and calipers are necessities in a bike shop. I tell bicycle retailers that if they let their customers use our digital hanging scale to compare items, then they will boost sales, because many consumers will pay extra for the lighter equipment. Which pro teams use FeedBack Sports products? Many factory pro teams such as Cannondale, Specialized, and Kona use Feedback Sports work stands and storage products. Mechanics supporting pro racers like Katie Compton, Steve Peat, Sabine Spitz, Todd Wells, and Julian Absalon use our products. The A-frame event stand holds eight bikes and is great for travelling teams and fleets. What advantages can your work stands offer over the competition? Our uniquely designed work stands combine stability with lightweight portability and ease of use. Our clamps are proven in the industry, and our top of the line clamp has a quick release, which has had many positive reviews.
BIKES AND ACCESSORIES
68 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
How do you plan to grow the business going forwards? Better market penetration in existing markets and opening new markets will boost sales, short term. At Eurobike this year, we opened up new distributors in Spain, Italy and Israel and there are still a few areas worldwide minus distribution. For longer-term growth, we will expand the product line and increase marketing efforts. We believe our strong product line gives us potential for growth. Workstands and racks aside, what else can you offer the retailer? We make a wheel truing stand, which is portable and attaches to our work stands. We also offer accessories for work stands like a tool tray. Our measurement tools are handy in store and can sell at the retail level. The digital chain gauge is our newest measurement tool. How can trade accounts get in touch? In the USA, we sell directly to bicycle dealers. Outside of the USA we sell through our distributors listed at www.feedbacksports.com. In the UK, 2pure is our exclusive distributor.
â€œMany factory pro teams, such as Cannondale, Specialized and Kona use Feedback workstands...â€?
BIKES AND ACCESSORIES
BIKEBIZ MARKETPLACE BIKES & ACCESSORIES
WE’VE GOT IT
COVERED Workshop quality tools for the home mechanic – precision engineered by Cyclo • Chain Tools Including wear indicators and rivet extractors Chain Wear Indicator 07902 Rivex Chain Rivet Extractor 06003 Universal Rivoli Chain Rivet Extractor 06300 • Spanners Workshop quality spanners for all parts of your bike Single Headed Cone Spanners Available in sizes from 13mm-22mm 15mm Pedal Spanner 06382 Forged 15mm Pedal Spanner 06371 Plus a wide range of Open/Ring, Bottom Bracket and Headset Spanners • Sprocket Removers With long cushioned handles for ease of use 5,6,7 & 8 Speed 06383 9 & 10 Speed 06385 • Torque Wrench Ensures nuts are tightened correctly 3/8” Drive, 3-25 Nm Torque Wrench 06317 • Multi Tools Folding allen key and screwdriver sets Multi Tool 06320 Deluxe Multi Tool 06321 • Basic Tools All the essentials that no toolbox should be without – including pliers, screwdrivers, cable cutters, hammers and files
WE ARE BIKE MAINTENANCE www.weldtite.co.uk
BMX PARTS AND ACCESSORIES
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 69
70 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
PRINT & DESIGN SERVICES
PRINT & DESIGN SERVICES
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 71
BIKEBIZ MARKETPLACE RACKS
RESPRAYS & REPAIRS
REPAIRS & STORAGE
London's first professional cycle mechanic training course. City & Guilds accreditation Comply with industry certification standards Gain a fundamental knowledge of cycle mechanics A fully-equipped, professional workshop in Central London Experienced teachers Lots of hands-on learning State of the art training material Employment opportunities On-going support and community Become part of a global growth industry. Telephone 0207 6082577 Mobile 07786 636771 E-mail email@example.com Website www.cycle-systems-academy.co.uk in association with: The Cycle Systems Academy is very proud to be sponsored by:
72 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
HAVERING C O L L E G E
Promo code: BB41Q
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 73
OFF THE RECORD
I N THE SADDLE
Dominik Peitsch, Marketing Director, Hebie What bikes do you own and where’s your favourite place to ride? I own a dozen bikes for various needs. Some are already historical like the first folding bike (Micro bike), a Cannondale I bought in 1990, through to my race bike from Cilo (Swiss) from the last range. My diverse collection also includes an electric bike and tandem. My latest is an urban bike from trenga.de (Germany). Mostly I like to ride in ‘my’ forest (Teutoburger Wald) near to home with my Norco.
Let’s get Statistical This month in our regular round-up of statistics BikeBiz looks at the growing number of Evans Cycles stores, the increase of online sales in the cycle industry and how much Co2 is used in the production of a Brompton bike. Meanwhile, ActSmart reveals several causes for concern for cycle retailers as part of its regular independent dealer research...
Could you share with us a brief history of Hebie? The firm has the longest history in the bike business, to my knowledge. It was founded in 1868 and from 1905 the firm began making grips, chain guards, carriers, mudguards and stands, which still all feature in our line today. The clip-on mudguard was a ground-breaking invention of Hebie’s in the early eighties. At the same time stands were developed that became best sellers. For today’s market, our new chain guard system, Chainglider, makes our catalogue very appealing. In future I see the Quicksnap Carrier system becoming popular – it links up well with our new Bootbag. Tell us about your role at Hebie: I care for Hebie’s day-to-day running with my own agency for new products and communication strategies. Thirteen years ago I started exporting Hebie goods but found there was not much need for Hebie products in the UK. Being back in London this year, I am convinced cyclists are now ready for our line of accessories. My role will be to do all I can for the cyclists of your market to keep them clean and make them transport things via bike. What products can Hebie offer the bicycle retailer? Hebie offers all possible existing solutions on its field of modern urban mobility. There are 15 different stand models, ten different mudguard models and numerous chain guards in all measurements and designs. We also manufacture a round carrier system with a modular system that fits nicely with the UK’s new enthusiasm for bikes. Where is Hebie’s product designed and manufactured? We’ve made our products in Bielefeld (Germany) for 105 years. Only with the latest carrier models were we forced to go to Asia, but this does not yet represent ten per cent of our turnover. Design and testing is done exclusively in our own facility with specially developed test devices. How can UK bicycle dealers take stock? We’ve dealt for years with AMBA Marketing, the main source for UK retail. From 2011 we hope for more visibility of our brand. The paradigm of cycling in the UK has changed enormously recently, which is clearly apparent to us.
74 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
42 The number of stores Evans Cycles now holds in its retail portfolio. The firm recently opened one in Wimbledon, taking over a site previously used as a BMW garage.
£560m The level of cash held by the newly formed Local Sustainable Transport Fund. Cycling will have to share the fund with bus, pedestrian and road safety schemes. Electric cars will get £400m.
9.999 seconds Chris Hoy's time (over 200m) at the European Elite Track Championships in qualification. However, Hoy misjudged his lead and was beaten by the Republic of Ireland's 18 year-old Felix English. BIKEBIZ.COM
OFF THE RECORD ActSmart October retail shop sales analysis
Retail sales wane with the weather 57% The percentage of cyclists who admit an injury they’ve suffered was their own fault, according to Capita Insurance Services.
ActSmart’s monthly market research for October, produced exclusively for ACT and BikeBiz, reflects a second month of sales decline in the specialist retail sector vs. 2009, as international economic woes catch up with the cycle industry... Specialist cycle retailer core sales growth vs. previous year
56% The figure by which US e-commerce provider Shopatron said the bike brands it partners with have grown online by, in Q2 2010. This was the year when online sales in the cycle industry went mainstream, according to the firm.
199.9 miles The distance you can travel in a petrol engined, dual purpose 4x4 car before you have produced more Co2 than it takes to make a Brompton (according the free-to-use Carbon Calculator at www.Brompton.co.uk). BIKEBIZ.COM
‘% turnover growth vs. previous year'
25 20 15 10 5 0
October 2009 – September 2010
SPECIALIST CYCLE retailer ‘core’ sales declined by -4.7 per cent in October vs. 2009, continuing the downward trend that first impacted in September. The industry may be growing, but the greatest growth remains in fair weather cycling and as with the weather, the future is difficult to forecast. ‘Core’ sales trends measure standard transactions, cash, cards and cheques, but do not incorporate other types such as retail finance, where the IBD ‘Ride It Away’ scheme continues to report sales growth in excess of 30 per cent like-forlike vs. 2009, and Cycle To Work vouchers where Cyclescheme reported a 50 per cent increase in employee engagement with IBDs over the past year. Non-core sales are pushing overall IBD sector revenues closer to parity with last
year, but the underlying core sales trend remains a concern, with winter and VAT increases ahead. Despite the furore that accompanied the extensive price increases in early 2009, driven by the weakness of sterling, the sector has missed that general inflationary benefit in 2010 to date. Retailer performance in October was broadly similar to September. 44 per cent of retailers reported a sales increase in the month, with one quarter of IBDs increasing sales by more than 20 per cent with an overall growth rate of over 50 per cent. Twenty nine per cent of retailers reported a sales decline in excess of 20 per cent in October and a continued downturn through the winter could yet prove fatal for a number of these.
For more info visit: http://cycles.actsmart.biz/news/ ActSmart: 0845 6187256 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 75
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k c a r T
Trip to the Palace for GB cycling guru BRITISH CYCLING’S Shane Sutton took a trip to Buckingham Palace last month where Her Majesty the Queen appointed him Officer of the Order of the British Empire, or OBE in short. As performance manager, Sutton has been a key player behind the rise of the GB Cycling Team since 2002, coaching and mentoring the athletes that went on to win 34 medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Games. Sutton is set to continue his central role in the run up to London 2012. Sutton is a former road and track cyclist himself, and winner of a number of titles like Gold in the Team Pursuit at the Commonwealth Games in 1978 and the 1990 overall winner of the Milk Race. Speaking of his OBE, Sutton said: “It is a huge honour and privilege to be here
today which I owe entirely to the brilliant work and commitment of the riders, the coaching team and the support staff around me. This accolade is not about personal achievement but that of the whole GB Cycling Team.”
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• queen honours team gb mentor
Cycle Chic rides target women CYCLING CITY YORK has combined the lure of retail therapy with gentle exercise for its female-focused guided rides around York – branded Cycle Chic. The rides are just the latest addition to the Cycling City’s extensive programme of free guided rides. Cycle Chic rides are heading to the Designer Outlet near York in November, and a trip to the famous Christmas Market in December. Loretta Spyers-Ashby, cycling activity officer, said: “We’re really keen to introduce more women to the benefits of cycling. We’ve tried to come up with guided rides that will enable women to get out and socialise together and, at the same time, get some exercise and fresh air, and boost their confidence in their cycling abilities. We’ve selected fun destinations that will hopefully appeal to women and have included a period of free time as part of the rides so that they will have chance to go and grab a coffee or do a spot of shopping before making the journey back.”
Muddy Hell goes annual after first year success Dalby and Fort William scoop awards CYCLING SPORT governing body UCI awarded Dalby Forest and also Fort William as the best Cross Country and Downhill Mountain Bike World Cup rounds of 2010. Teams, journalists, riders, UCI officials and sponsors all voted for the awards, taking into account infrastructure, course quality and local facilities – as well as the overall event. Fort William has won the prestigious gong a whopping six times and received
76 BIKEBIZ DECEMBER
particular praise for its revised downhill course. Dalby Forest, meanwhile, bagged the prize for a number of reasons, including its technical loop on a brand new course and top media facilities. British Cycling chief exec Ian Drake enthused on the wins: “I’m thrilled that the events at Dalby Forest and Fort William have been recognised by the UCI and yet again these awards are further testimony to Britain’s ability to host truly world-class events.”
ROLLAPALUZA and Tour De Ville’s Halloween cyclocross event, Muddy Hell, is now to be an annual fixture thanks to a turnout of over 1,000 visitors during October. As London’s first nighttime cyclocross event, the early interest surpassed organisers’ predictions and in the end, approximately 270 riders attended, many in full ghoulish attire (right). Full results and event photos, of which there are hundreds, can be found at londoncyclesport.com.
OFF THE RECORD Sponsored by the brands of Moore Large 01332 274252
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Bell raises £5.5k on Continental charity ride ENGINEER CHRIS BELL has returned from his 2,500-mile charity bike ride across Europe. As featured in October’s BikeBiz, Bell set out to visit countries on the continent on a Dahon Cadenza to raise cash and awareness for Prostate Cancer Charity. Starting in Corfu on September 3rd, Bell covered 14 different countries and regions, including Corfu, Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy, South Tyrol, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, France, England and Wales. Not only did the intrepid cyclist raise over £5,500 for charity (with cash still rolling in), but he also celebrated his 60th birthday during the trip.
It wasn’t all easy riding, Bell revealed: “I was helped along the way by numerous acts of kindness and generosity, whichever country I happened to be passing though – like the beers bought for me in Albania and Macedonia by poor people who were simply pleased to see me visiting their countries.” Bell himself suffers from Prostate Cancer, a disease that kills 30 men every day in the UK. www.highpath.net/ highpath/touring/europe.
BIKEBIZ DECEMBER 77
OFF THE RECORD
TWEET short and
Wondering what the Twitterati have been up to this month? Look no further...
Evans help us The rise and rise of bike retailer Evans Cycles is a cause for celebration across the trade, claims Carlton Reid... IN THE 1960s, mathematician Paul Cooper theorised that a chute cut through the Earth, evacuated of its air, would allow for a vacuum-assisted drop-down journey from one side of the planet to the other. The first half of the plummet would consist of fast free-fall; the second half would consist of an exactly equal deceleration. The time for such a journey? 42 minutes. 42 is a peculiar number that often crops up in mathematics and literature. That’s why it was chosen as the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. It is also now a stand-out number in the bike trade. Evans Cycles has reached the magical number of 42 stores. This isn’t perhaps as much of a retail landmark as 50 stores but it’s a wake-up call nonetheless. 42 stores. Yoiks, that’s quite some chain. This concentration of IBD business in one chain frightens and emboldens rivals in equal measure. Reaching 42 stores is frightening for rivals because the economies of scale such a business can bring to bear are significant. Evans can now launch or resurrect brands with almost guaranteed success: Jamis is the latest to get the Evans touch. But the growth of Evans doesn’t scare every rival. Many revel in the chain’s growth, gleefully pointing out that you don’t get true gourmet coffee in Starbucks. For sure, Evans stores are corporate stores, but many consumers couldn’t give a fig about this, they just want a local bike store. While a quality, independent espresso bar isn’t available on every street corner, it’s comforting to know you can get a Starbuckian caffeine kick on pretty much every corner, and, really, Starbucks coffee is a quantum leap better than coffee used to be. The spread and spread of Starbucks didn’t reduce the demand for coffee from other outlets. Quite the opposite. A strong player can bring the rest of the market up with it.
I’m devastated...shooting a new spot for Mich Ultra and the bosses asked me to shave my @movember stache. Damn! (Lancearmstrong) Last wish of a dying man wrongly imprisoned for 32 years in Mississippi? To go out for a bike ride. (BikingBis) Likewise with Evans. From a whole market perspective, it’s very much a force for good. A large chain proves there’s money to be made in the bike trade. Evans mostly opens stores in new locations, it doesn’t re-brand existing IBDs. This, also, is good, stimulating trade in new urban pockets. Naturally, a large and expanding chain has might on its side and, unchecked, can steam-roller through a market. Evans is dominant but not yet domineering: it has lots of atomised competition. Ten years ago there were a touch over 2,000 IBDs in the UK. Today there are perhaps a touch over 2,000 IBDs in the UK. For every IBD that closes, another opens. This is a healthy market. There’s space for ambitious single site IBDs and space, too, for ambitious multi-store chains. There’s also space for internet giants such as Wiggle and Chain Reaction. The dire warnings of a trade collapsing in on itself have not come true. Bike trade stats are rarer than hens’ teeth but it’s safe to assume we operate in an expanding market. Happy Christmas!
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So, the Spanish authorities reckon the Contador case will take three months at least to sort out. In other words, they're 'fast-tracking’ it. (Plastic_Peloton)
Tweeters: I think we’re all agreed then – cold toes are the worst, followed by ears and then noses. (CondorCycles) A whole Red Bull sweetens a cup of coffee perfectly. (SubrosaBrand)
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