What with public and staff protests because of chimps in its TV ads, a supplier backlash against unilaterally imposed new trading terms, and a slow down in the roll-out of 'new concept' Bikehut stores, Halfords has had a torrid few weeks. Too torrid for Scott, it seems...

Scott pulls out of Bikehut

In a letter to IBD customers, Ian Hughes, general manager of Scott Sports SA (UK Branch), said he was ending the agreement to supply Bikehut, which started in April.

"Since the announcement of my accepting an invitation to supply a New Concept Halfords Bikehut store in Burton on Trent on a trial basis, I have always said that if I was not happy with the trial, or Halfords themselves, that I would pull out of the agreement," said Hughes.

And pull out he has. Hughes blames the turmoil at the stripped-down corporate:

"Shortly after [Scott announced the deal with Bikehut], Halfords new chairman announced a major re-organisation of their company. I have monitored carefully this re-organisation and the possible effect it may have on our Brand Values. I have listened and discussed with the people at Halfords Bikehut who are making the decisions which direction they are taking the company, rather than listen to gossip."

And clearly, Hughes didn’t like what he heard:

"I have decided to withdraw our Scott brand from the trial Halfords Bikehut store in Burton on Trent. The reason for this is due to Halfords Bikehut being unable to deliver the original promise of the design and layout of this New Concept Store."

Hughes isn’t burning bridges, though.

"I have been invited to continue a dialogue with Halfords Bikehut whilst they are going through this re-organisation and still believe they are, and will be, a major player in our market for the foreseeable future."

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