Focusing on few complementary high-end brands has been the key to success, according to distributor

Saddleback notches up 44 per cent growth

Elite Bike product distributor Saddleback has seen sales increase 40 per cent, despite the troubled economic climate.

The firm, which is four years old, signed significant distribution deals during the course of 2008, including a major agreement with SRAM to handle its road product lines.

Talking to BikeBiz, Saddleback director Andy Wigmore said: “2008 was a good year for the company. We grew by about 40 per cent, which we have done every year since we started.

“It was a great year for us as we saw major and international brands come on board. Even though we’re a young company, brands like SRAM are seeing us as a major player and a worthwhile partner.”

“We spent nine months speaking to people there to secure the distribution deal and already we are proving they made the right choice. I think that we are biggest road distributors for them in Europe, which is very encouraging.”

Wigmore added that the firm’s concentration on a limited number of brands was a key factor in bringing about that success.

“We don’t have a strategy of having 20 different brands that we distribute and then doing an average job with all of them. We’re very much focused on high-end brands that all link together.

“We want to be able to focus and do a good job on all of them. I think that becomes very hard when you have lots of big brands with lots of product lines – I struggle to see how you can do them all justice.”

“It’s flattering as there are a lot of well established distributors out there doing a good job with great people. It shows that we’re getting things right, that we’re going down the right track, and that we’re different and interesting to these brands.”

Wigmore concluded by telling BikeBiz that it hadn’t been easy for the firm to achieve this impressive sales performance: “We’ve not had dealers banging the door down wanting to make lots of orders –we’ve had to work hard to achieve considerable increases.”

To read the full interview, click here.

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