Fine-adc is one of many similar such companies that pop up. But there's a difference: the rider in question has a background in buying and retail. James Towlson was with Edinburgh Bike Co-op for 11 years and with Raw Experience for nearly two years. After six months piercing together a business plan and attending international trade shows he's found four of the five small brands he wants to represent: Casco cycle helmets and eyewear, Ergon grips and saddles, Purple Extreme chain lubricant and Elete elctrolyte concentrate.

Rider creates distribution company for niche IBD-only brands

Fine-adc is based in Innerleithen, close to the Glentress MTB trails.

Towlson was a buyer at Edinburgh Bike Co-op, ending up as store manager before leaving for a buying position with Raw Experience, also of Edinburgh.

His new company has mailed its first 50 dealers, with another mailshot – to 300 dealers – ready to go out next week.

Towlson recognises the brands he’s representing are, for want of a better term, micro-brands.

"I went out looking for innovation. I didn’t want to rock any boats by trying to go after brands already being brought into the UK. I wanted brands I would be enthusiastic about, with products I’d want to buy as a rider."

Towlson found Purple Extreme at Interbike in September. Purple Extreme is the "world’s most advanced bicycle chain lubricant," said Towlson.

It’s produced by Bike Medicine of the US and was promoted at Interbike with tiny sampler bottles ( snaffled some from the press room, it tasted lovely). Towlson plans to offer these sampler bottles to consumers who sign up for further info on the Fine-adc website, although all sales will be through IBDs.

Bike Medicine’s Bruce Gilbert found the lube in the product portfolio of industrial lubrication company Royal Purple. It’s an oil for underwater offshore drilling and hard-rock mining.

"Purple Extreme was proven in some of the harshest conditions imaginable, for months at a time. It lubes, while resisting dirt and corrosion," said Towlson.

"Purple Extreme has extremely high film strength, way beyond most conventional chain lubrication products available within the bicycle industry."

In the US, Bike Medicine is in the process of launching two new products: an aluminum oxide, extreme pressure synthetic grease and a citrus-based ultra fast degreaser.

Ergon grips from Sweden are ergonomically-designed handlebar grips and the company also produces a line of saddles made by Selle Italia.

Casco is a German helmet brand.

"Casco’s cycle helmets are a refreshing take on high quality, design and safety," said Towlson.

"They have different qualities and a unique appeal compared to the best of mainstream brands manufactured in East Asia. There are also some children’s helmets with uncommonly high quality."

Elete is an electrolyte concentrate, produced in Utah and available in the UK from April.

"For those trying trying to maintain weight with limited time for exercise, Elete provides an alternative to sweet sports drinks and enhances performance without calories, carbohydrates or artificial ingredients," said Towlson.

Tel: 01896 833 142


In other news...

Digital advertising agency Girodilento launched by Scott Purchas

A new digital advertising agency, Girodilento, has officially launched, headed up by Scott Purchas. Girodilento …