This month, BikeBiz catches up with Martin Wabnegger, area sales manager for Motorex
Can you give us a little background on Motorex?
Founded in 1917, Motorex is an independent, family-owned Swiss company. It is active in the area of developing, manufacturing and marketing lubricants and chemicals for a wide range of applications. Based in Langenthal, Switzerland, Motorex, with its 370 employees, operates three manufacturing sites in Europe and distributes products in 89 countries.
Motorex is well known for its high development rate of innovative lubricants and related chemicals, where best technical performance, environmentally-friendly chemistry and workplace safety are key business drivers.
What is the Motorex mission statement?
We aim to be a reliable partner to all our customers, who are at the centre of our attention. Motorex has provided its customers with the highest quality products and services for more than 100 years. This top quality and experience make Motorex a reliable partner to SMEs and the industry, as well as to cyclists and motorcyclists – both professional and amateur.
What area of the market does Motorex target?
We have a comprehensive range of care and maintenance products that are suitable for all types of bicycle disciplines including cleaners, degreasers and lubricants.
When it comes to racing activities, we heavily focus on the MTB Downhill World Cup and elite-level enduro racing because of our great expertise in suspension fluids. These, together with our range of dedicated greases, are favourites of many top race team mechanics and are equally in high demand in bicycle workshops around the globe.
What makes Motorex unique?
All our products are developed in close cooperation with top race teams. These guys do not just want the best product, but also the most convenient packaging and application, so our product development doesn’t stop with the fluids. And the products which are approved by the teams are exactly what the cyclists can buy, all Motorex Bikeline products are truly race-proven.
I already mentioned the suspension fluids before, they are a perfect example. Our chemists developed a new chemical composition from scratch according to the demands of some of the best DH riders in the world. They were then extensively tested by these riders as well as on suspension dynos. This process took a while but now we have an amazing range of suspension fluids which have already been chosen by several OEMs for first fill of their forks and shocks.
Tell us about your manufacturing process.
All Bikeline products are produced in our factory in Langenthal, giving us 100% control of product quality, which is most important to us. We have a big team of chemists in our in-house lab whose main day-to-day task is constant monitoring of product quality throughout the complete production process. This starts with the analysis of all ingredients and ends only once the product is filled and ready to be shipped to our customers.
What does Motorex offer that its competitors perhaps do not?
We offer all products that a bicycle shop needs, be it in the workshop or for retail business. In addition to the dedicated bicycle products like lubes and cleaners, we have lots of service products like brake fluids and technical sprays for cutting, welding and so on available which are all of the highest-quality, self-developed and produced in-house.
What has the reaction to the product been like so far?
We’re really well established in bicycle workshops around the world which especially swear on our greases. When it comes to mountain biking, our Bike Clean and Wet Protect Lube are selling really well, which we think will be perfect for the UK market given the wet, muddy conditions most riders face year-round.
What’s also been really well accepted and has seen a lot of growth in sales last year is our waterless Quick Clean. It’s ideal for urban riders as it’s a quick and easy cleaning solution for the bike which can even be used indoors. And, of course, people love our easy-application 360-degree spray heads which make sure you can apply our cleaners from every angle and to every part of the bike; we think that’s a great example of the development we put into our product delivery systems as well as what’s inside.
What innovations in the industry are exciting you?
Clearly e-bikes. Especially in mountain biking, they have brought so many additional riders (back) into the sport which gives us great scope for growth in the years to come. And they also offer a new level of experience to existing riders who switch to e-bikes, as they can further extend their rides and enjoy them even more. E-bikes also put additional demands on oils and lubricants which will undoubtedly drive product development, which opens up some exciting opportunities.
What are your plans for 2021 and beyond?
Our product development is a constant process, so we will be upgrading existing products as well as adding new ones throughout the year.
In the UK, we are very much looking forward to re-establishing our brand in the market together with our new distribution partner Extra UK. It is a great group of highly professional and passionate people and the perfect partner for us in servicing the bicycle trade in the UK and Ireland.