Schwalbe, Lapierre, Oakley, CSG (with GT, Fabric and Charge), Hunt Wheels, Canyon, PlanetX, Light Blue and Surly are among the names making their NEC Cycle Show debut this year. They’ll be joining somewhere north of 280 bike companies, including big names and upstarts alike.
While new product will likely be the main attraction for the trade (and there’ll be UK and world debuts at NEC) there’ll be plenty of other reasons to make the trip, including chance to try out some of that new product on MTB, kids, e-bike, city and road tracks, plus seminars and big names like Sam Pilgrim and the Big Air Invitational.
A Tour of Britain café will align the show nicely with the race, while a beefed up retail village will provide punters with chance to part with more cash. Making full use of the NEC’s MTB track, the cyclocross races will return and this time will be opened up to riders of all abilities with new races for youths, juniors and veterans as well as men and women elite riders. The racing has been moved to Saturday 26th to allow more riders to take part, and there will be £2,000 prize money up for grabs. This 2015 course has been extended to 2km with the racing starting and finishing inside the show. This year the riders will have to navigate a stepped platform and ramp giving visitors the chance to see the riders’ bike handling skills up close. Once the riders exit the halls they race through a technical section in the NEC woodlands with plenty of slippery roots and tricky switchbacks before heading into a new lakeside shingle section. You can find the full details at www.cycleshow.co.uk/cx
Other 2015 highlights include the first UK appearance of the Shimano support truck. This 40ft double-decker will be filled with the latest components from the brand and PRO, including a vast display of Shimano Dura-Ace and XTR product as well as the latest incarnation of DEORE XT and the STEPS E-bike system.
Speaking of trucks, the Etixx Tacx truck will be making a detour to Brum, too, full of Tacx trainers.
London-based cycle accessory company CYCL is to bring its WingLights to Cycle Show. These quality aluminium direction indicators magnetically attach to mounting units that are screwed into the ends of straight handlebars. They were designed to increase visibility for cyclists changing lanes and turning at busy junctions, and do so with bright amber flashing LED lights that can be seen from all angles and in all weather conditions, the brand tells BikeBiz. They’re neatly turned on and off with a simple tap and the WingLights clip off and snap together to form a neat keyring on a carabiner hook after use. There’s a more affordable version that screws directly into the handlebars and don’t feature magnets.
You may have already caught them on Kickstarter, where it hit its funding target twice over. But now the brand is at the show, aiming to get the product into major retailers and independently owned shops.
Rubena will be heading to NEC with big news. The tyre label is rebranding as Mitas under the guidance of Czech-based holding firm CGS. Mitas is a big name in the motorcycle world, we’re told, and will absorb the Rubena cycle range into its portfolio of products, with more clout promised. There will be no change to manufacturing process, quality control, products, back-up and support but, as would be expected from the large European producer of bicycle tyres, there are plenty of innovative products waiting to be launched, which is where the show comes in. The first out of the Mitas stable is Textra, an all-new dense and extremely strong rubberised fabric applied to the tyre’s sidewall to increase resistance against puncture, with minimal impact on the all-important weight.
Nowhere were the benefits of the new Textra tech better illustrated than at the 2015 Cape Epic endurance race where, in eight days of extreme and arduous off-road racing, not one of the 40 riders using Textra experienced a single defect, so we’re told. Textra is available on Kratos, Zefyros and Scylla Top Design MTB tyres.
You’ll find the Mitas/Rubena team on stand A7 with brand specialist Matt Lane.
Citrus-Lime is among the trade day-only exhibitors, aiming to chat with current and prospective customers this year at the show. A spokesperson tells BikeBiz: “Our Marketing Service packages have seen great success with our online customers, we are keen to see this success with all our customers. At the show we can enlighten customer to how these can be adopted step-by-step as the business grows.”
The ever-growing Supplier Integration Module has seen new additions with Hope and Moore & Large. In fact Citrus-Lime is now opening its doors to B2B and any suppliers looking for an industry specific platform are invited to come along and chat with the firm.
The firm adds: “Our Cloud Reporting Module had revolutionised how our retailers are carrying out their business reports. Existing customers must call in to get a demo of the latest reports and prospect customers can learn more about this free service received by all of our Citrus-Lime customers.”
Also in the EPOS/ecommerce space, EVOPOS will be touting its Dealer management software at the NEC. The software is an all-in-one solution with effective telephone support that includes quick and easy POS software, comprehensive stock control, workshop organiser, hires, accounts and automated SMS and email marketing. The software is packed with cycle industry-relevant features, EVOPOS says, where everything about the customer is tracked, sales of parts, whole goods and all of those vital contact information.
The Evopos CRM module (customer relation module) comes free with all dealer packages and can help with sales and customer service with accurate reports on sales enquiries and where they have been generated from, features where management can easily follow the progress of new sales initiatives and customer feedback and much more. Head over to Stand number M65 to get the full EVOPOS run-down.
The cycle trade and press get the scoop on the general public at Cycle Show with a trade preview day on Thursday. Get your free tickets at www.cycleshow.co.uk/trade
This is but a small selection of the brands and companies appearing at Cycle Show 2015. We’ll be covering some of the remainder in our October issue, out next week in print and online here at BikeBiz.com.