ACT restructures to focus more on retailers’ needs

The Association of Cycle Traders (ACT) is restructuring to become more focused on the needs of retailers.

By closely aligning the ACT with the many trade organisations and sectors that make up the Independent Retailers Confederation (IRC), it will be working with over 100,000 independent retailers engaging Government, business and consumers.

Since the lockdown, ACT subscribers have reached record levels and the industry has benefitted from a ‘phenomenal’ spike in demand, especially for workshop services. But, as the pandemic continues to impact the economy, an already fragile high street is witnessing business closures and changes in consumer buying habits that are altering the face of retail. “As our very existence comes under threat, it is essential that the retail sector works together in partnership, sharing knowledge, buying power and resources to adapt for future retail,” said the ACT.

“The ACT has been accessed by businesses more than any other cycling organisation; we have an established fundamental role, knowledge and representation. Following lengthy consultation, the remodelled ACT is looking to prioritise retail turnover, engagement with consumers, increased Government engagement on business, alongside our work with cycling advocacy bodies and support services for a business’ greatest asset – your people.”

The ACT is the largest active leisure member of the IRC and retains its heritage in cycling, continuing to work with organisations engaged with cycle and mobility advocacy in the UK, especially where activities impact directly upon the business community.

At such a critical time for business, the ACT said its key focus will be on extended support and development in partnership, rather than duplication of established activities.

A new membership structure will allow all businesses to “embrace the ACT as their trade body”, the association said, more accessible to any business who can benefit from a selection of services free of charge. Participants at every level will benefit from extended business support with new services being added to the portfolio alongside a reduced pricing structure to cater for all.

The ACT’s focus on recruitment, skilling and retention is becoming more critical as the changes in retail identify the need for investment in people and skills. The Cytech programme is currently undertaking expansion plans in all markets globally to support the worldwide demand for cycle technicians, encouragingly with increased Government support.

The ACT said it is adapting with the objective of bringing the cycle business community “closer together”, with a priority focus upon speciality retail. This will not only better serve businesses and the people employed, but will increase consumer engagement and encourage growth in cycling participation, it added.

For further information please refer to the ACT update here.

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