Representatives of the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) and top executives from international bicycle industry companies met at Eurobike last night to discuss how to "advance pro-bicycle policies across Europe."
A statement from the advocacy group said: "Combining the might of the bicycle business with ECF has been an ambition for some time. Last year’s Eurobike saw CEOs from leading international companies agree on the idea of forming an ECF Cycling Industry Club. Companies involved include ACCELL, DT Swiss, Schwalbe, Selle Royal, SRAM, Trek and Trelock. Last night’s meeting sought to make the Cycling Industry Club a reality, with an aim to review ECF’s lobby and promotion activities and target Europe for new projects."
Strengthening ties between the industry and advocacy groups is in the best interests of all parties, said ECF.
When quizzed on the need for such a club, Manfred Neun, president of the European Cyclists’ Federation, said:
“Having a strong and high-quality global bicycle industry is central to ensuring a high standard of products globally.
"Cyclists need their products to be state of the art. Having bicycle user groups forge stronger links with bicycle industry will ensure that the development of new products and design will continue in the future. A healthy bicycle industry is in ECF’s best interests."
Likewise, lobby and promotion work on behalf of ECF and its member organizations which advocate for greater and improved infrastructure, facilities and conditions for cyclists is in the best interests of the cycling industry, said Neun.
"Pro-cycling policies will translate to more people cycling more often, and will ultimately mean more bicycles being sold."
SRAM CEO Stan Day said: “We need strong cycling advocacy on all levels, from local to international. ECF is leading advocacy in Brussels and developing advocacy leaders in growing markets.”
ECF secretary general Bernhard Ensink said:
"Governments will continue to fund transportation at some level even in shrinking economies. Our job is to show that the smartest use of limited transportation funds is to fund cycling as an essential part of a modern, sustainable transport system."