Industry Digest: More Porsche Investments, Airbag Shorts & More

Jun 25, 2022
by Ed Spratt  
What's going on in the cycling industry this month? Industry Digest is a peek behind the curtain and showcases articles from our sister site, Bicycle Retailer and Industry News. In each installment, you might find patents, mergers, financial reports and industry gossip.



Porsche Ventures invests in e-mobility insurance company Laka
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

E-mobility insurance company Laka has secured funding from Porsche Ventures, bringing its Series A investment to $13.5 million.

Laka said in a news release that it will use the new capital and network opportunities to help its European expansion in e-scooters, e-mopeds, and eventually electric cars to better serve European partnerships, including manufacturers, retailers, and leasing businesses.

The funding is led by Autotech Ventures and Pon Holdings' Ponooc Investment B.V., which focuses on sustainable energy and mobility solutions, and Dutch bank ABN AMRO. An angel investment in Laka also came from Zwift CEO and cofounder Eric Min in January.

(Read more.)




Jessica Klodnicki named CEO of KT Tape
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

Jessica Klodnicki is the new CEO of recovery product company KT Tape. She previously was chief marketing officer of Skullcandy.

"We are thrilled to welcome Jessica to KT Tape," said Mark Schwartz, director and CEO of Palladin Consumer Retail Partners, KT Tape's majority shareholder. "Her extensive industry expertise, leadership prowess, and collaborative energy make her the perfect choice to lead the company through its next chapter of continued growth and innovation."

(Read more.)




Bridge Bike Works invests in North American carbon fiber bikes, manufacturing
By: Dean Yobbi // Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

When collaborating on a new brand, Michael Yakubowicz and Frank Gairdner didn't just want to build a bike. They wanted to create the entire manufacturing process from pencil to paint under one roof.

Bridge Bike Works is the result, a brand three years in the making and built to design and manufacture carbon fiber frames, forks, and parts in North America. Its 8,200-square-foot facility — 2,000 of which is set aside for showroom and office space — is in Toronto, with the first pre-production prototype completed this week for testing. Production bikes are expected by August, with 60 pre-orders filled.

Bridge also has ambitions to begin OEM carbon fiber production.

(Read more.)




The e-bike conversion market quietly revs up in the wake of the e-bike boom
By: PAUL TOLMÉ // Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

Shop owner Brad Davis’s career as an e-bike entrepreneur offers a peek inside an often overlooked but increasingly profitable corner of the electric bike market: e-bike conversions.

A decade or more ago, before the industry pivoted and began pumping out e-bikes in all shapes, sizes, and price points, many e-bikes on American streets were DIY retrofits. Early adopters had to figure out how to install a motor and battery system themselves or find a shop to do it.

“There wasn’t anything good on the market,” said Davis, who saw an opportunity. Thirteen years ago, he co-founded EcoSpeed, an early e-bike conversion kit that never really took off. “The batteries all kind of sucked.”

(Read more.)




HLC invests $200,000 in its Quebec Wheel Shop
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

HLC is making a CA$250,000 ($193,000) investment in its Wheel Shop, which the distributor said will help better supply North American dealers during a period of supply-chain challenges.

HLC said issues with the Asian supply chain, which North American dealers largely depend on, are making it more difficult and expensive to obtain replacement parts, especially wheels. According to HLC, Quebec-made Wheel Shop wheels will help dealers, consumers, and the industry.

(Read more.)




Shimano MTB shorts made of recycled airbag material win iF award
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

Shimano's REVO shorts, which are made of upcycled airbag material, won an iF Design Award in the Sport/Bicycle product category. The shorts were entered by Shimano Europe in the Netherlands.

According to iF Design, the shorts's "airbag fabric is dyed in various colors, and due to its structure, the shorts have a very interesting look and feel.

(Read more.)




Bryan Mason promoted to Pivot Cycles president
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

Bryan Mason was promoted to Pivot Cycles president and will oversee "key departments and management team members" in addition to all of the company's Stuttgart, Germany, operations.

Mason joined Pivot Cycles in 2015 as national sales manager before ascending to global sales manager in 2019.

"Bryan understands the dynamics of our leadership team, which is made up of very dedicated individuals," said CEO Chris Cocalis. "His new role helps support Pivot's tremendous growth and enables me to continue focusing on product development, expanding our global production capabilities, and the long-term vision for the company. Bryan's growth mindset will support every department and is a phenomenal asset to Pivot's future."

(Read more.)




Compass Diversified to buy PrimaLoft textile company
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

Compass Diversified, which owns BOA and Lizard Skins, has agreed to buy PrimaLoft, a Latham, N.Y.-based textile company. PrimaLoft makes synthetic insulation primarily used in sports apparel.

PrimaLoft was established in 1983 by Albany International Corporation in response to a U.S. Army request to develop a synthetic insulation for soldiers that replicated the warmth and weight characteristics of traditional goose down, but also remained warm when wet.

Today, PrimaLoft is used by more than 950 brands, including Patagonia, Pearl Izumi and Endura.

(Read more.)




KKR consortium proceeds with Accell Group acquisition despite not reaching share threshold
By: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

A consortium planning to acquire Accell Group and take it private has said it will move forward with the offer despite not reaching a threshold of 80% of shares committed to the buyout.

Accell Group said the company and the consortium, which is led by the global investment firm KKR, have agreed to waive the threshold.

The company announced June 3 that 73.53% of its shares had been tendered or committed to accept a buyout at 58 euros ($61.02) per share. Since then, another 4.26% of the shares have been committed, bringing it to 77.8%.

(Read more.)






63 Comments

  • 109 1
 Read the headline and imagined those airbag shorts to be some sort of body armour - shorts that instantly inflate during a crash. Disappointed.
  • 16 0
 Just tuck them into your knee pads and they will auto inflate when you do a wee poop just before you hit the ground
  • 5 0
 @gcrider: Already experience that most rides with the shorts i've got tbh.
  • 5 0
 Same. Thanks why I wear bib shorts underneath. To catch the poop !@IamDave:
  • 3 0
 They don't inflate. They blow.
  • 3 0
 Yeah, deflating in fact.
  • 5 0
 If those shorts ate made of recycled airbags, I'm just wondering if they managed to wash off all the blood stains or they come as additional design feature?
  • 4 0
 My skin has already contacted airbag fabric and I would rather it never occurred again
  • 1 0
 the moment I saw that headline I put my coffee down to open that page ..>
  • 3 0
 I was thinking( not vey well) they would have to choose airbags without peoples blood and burnt skin attached, but then I realised that they probably just use material from Tata air bag recall or cars being recycled. Air bag injury’s are no fun but are decreasing in severity with modern airbags and weight sensors in the seats. While still increasing survival rates significantly over belt only or non belted accidents. Hope you healed up well. @ilovedust:
  • 2 2
 @gcrider: Having most certainly been saved by the combo of airbags and crumble zones myself, I kinda wish I could have saved those inflated bags for some shorts. Would be a cool story.
  • 4 0
 they inflate to make you look like you have massive balls
  • 1 0
 @JSTootell: Riding in white shorts though...
  • 1 0
 @pakleni: Owning a business specializing in airbags I can honestly say I have never replaced an airbag with blood on it even in the early days. I'm sure there are some, but I've done thousands. The material is crazy tough. I'm also ok if auto manufacturers remove all airbags from all vehicles.
  • 1 0
 @rrolly: No mud in my hood.
  • 13 0
 (Air)baggy shorts are back!
  • 3 0
 This should be the punder one comment!
  • 2 0
 @korev: I'm sure it will be shortly.
  • 2 0
 @korev: I had to look up punder Smile
  • 1 0
 @kobold: Isn't Paul the Punder a youtube channel?
  • 2 0
 Big Pants Small Wheels /_/\_\ o o
  • 1 0
 @kobold: I did too. Could be because I'm a few beverages in but I still can't make it make sense in this...or any...context. Apologies for I'm not sure what.
  • 1 0
 @iammarkstewart: It was a pun on number one (and not a good one by the looks of it)
  • 1 0
 @threesixtykickflip: ah 90's skateboarding!
  • 7 0
 According to iF Design, the shorts's "airbag fabric is dyed in various colors, and due to its structure, the shorts have a very interesting look and feel.



As airbag material needs to be impermeable to gasses would this not result in a lot of unwanted sweatiness?
  • 23 0
 They've unwittingly created the mobile Dutch oven
  • 8 0
 An airbag is not a balloon. It's more like a backwards parachute. Or a fart cushion...
  • 7 1
 Usually there's some description of a brand's product or function in these articles if they're a bit obscure, but what even is KT Tape? Is it the muscle strapping tape athletes wear, because that doesn't seem uniquely pertinent to biking?
  • 10 5
 There is no scientific evidence that it does anything special.

en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elastic_therapeutic_tape

It maybe ok for taping a spare tube to your bike. But that would also be a waste of money.
  • 5 2
 @gcrider: oh no, theres no peer revieved scientific evidence for it, what are all these physiotherapists all over the world going to do now.
  • 3 7
flag shittybill (Jun 25, 2022 at 4:06) (Below Threshold)
 @gcrider: don't knock till you try it. If you use it right, it works. It's not a miracle cure or anything, but it helps.
  • 14 2
 @shittybill: I used it to tape over my ears at Glastonbury and it worked a charm, couldn't hear the shite. I know it's not peer reviewed but it definitely works.
  • 5 1
 Thinking it’s helping and it actually helping are two different things. @shittybill: I have used it. Well my Physio put it on me. But she was also the person that said that it was no better than normal tape.
  • 3 0
 @KondziuNS: Carry on billing their customers for it I expect...
  • 4 2
 @gcrider: I blew up the ligaments in both my ankles and the difference of using it or not was needing double crutches to move around vs being able to lightly jog and hike in to rivers carrying kayak and paddle.
  • 3 10
flag shittybill (Jun 25, 2022 at 7:29) (Below Threshold)
 @gcrider: Good, don't use it. Be in pain. Take pills that wreck your liver and make your stomach bleed because your smart and have a dumbass for a Physio. I'll wrap my ankle that I've broken 3 times in it and be happy. Choices.
  • 9 0
 @shittybill: username checks out
  • 1 1
 Tape Is Great!!
But high priced ,colourful elastic tape isn’t greaterRA than normal tape it seems.
  • 4 3
 Thanks for calling me smart (I’m flattered) for choosing lower priced boring tape over overpriced colourful tape with no proven scientific advantage.
As my physio is a leader in her field an internationally recognised researcher and practitioner with a phd, multiple peer reviewed publications and is also a post graduate educator.( I think they gave her tape for free) I think your dumbass accusation should be aimed closer to home. @shittybill:
  • 3 0
 @gcrider: I've actually read that the placebo effect is why this tape mostly works at all. Thinking it will work actually makes you feel better. Mind over matter?
  • 2 0
 @Rstetina: I've used it multiple times and it worked well. There was no placebo affect for me given I wouldn't have been able to get out on to the field and play with my strained hamstring. I don't know if other less expensive tape would have worked (likely would have), but I didn't see any alternatives.
  • 4 1
 Kinda funny Pivot operates its european sales and test fleet out of Stuttgart. There is not a single legal trail there. But Focus bikes has its headquarters there as well, so maybe they just don't give a fuck like everyone else
  • 3 1
 What? There is this amazing official trail called "Woodpecker", which now redefined the standard in MTB trails! Now Stuttgart is the new Mecca, no one flights anymore to Whistler! And it is not related to the price of kerosene :-D
  • 4 0
 @labourde: The woodpecker's permission is expired. It is not legal anymore
  • 1 0
 @bashhard: from one fellow to German to another: your irony detection needs proper calibrationSmile The point you raise in your original post is spot on, though!
  • 2 0
 @Andy-FFM: I know that the comment was ironic. Just wanted to say that they even let the permission of that one legal trail they had run out, which is ridiculous
  • 6 0
 KT tape story as part of industry news? Interesting.
  • 3 0
 Oh man, KT Tape? I thought this comically absurd nonsense went away back in 2012? I thought cupping is the thing now? Boggles the mind, but if they making money off absolute mental midgets, then I can’t fault them.
  • 1 0
 I hope HLC can make a handful of Canadian Tire grade 27.5 wheels with disc/freewheel hubs so we can fix all the bikes that kids crash at construction sites or that parents back into in the garage. Also, maybe some 24 inch whatevers.

Disclaimer: frustrated and several beverages in whilst typing this comment. Proofread x12. Hopefully my disdain for Canadian Tire shone through as grammatically correct. Matter of fact, throw Toys R Us, Walmart and half of Sportchek under the same bus.
  • 3 0
 I feel your frustration. Wasted 30 min other day trying to source that single wall/27.5”/6-bolt disc/*freewheel* replacement. Custy got a cassette hub upgrade wheel that cost half of the bike new instead. Awesome.
  • 1 0
 @Ceeco: I just sent a customer to the PB Buysell today, haha. This time for a quality wheel but old. After trying to get just a rim to rebuild he lost interest after "2 hundred...."
  • 3 0
 Do the shorts inflate if you've eaten too many beans?
  • 2 0
 "the shorts have a very interesting look and feel" a feast for eyes and trouser sausages everywhere
  • 1 0
 They're a sausage parachute that hits you in the face
  • 3 0
 bridge bike works... BBW???
  • 1 0
 No news about the ibis ebike?
  • 3 3
 That comb-over from the new Pivot President is bad decision making. Bad sign for a manager and leader.
  • 4 0
 Embrace the baldness! Trying to hide it doesn't work. Never has, never will. It just makes you look deluded.
  • 1 0
 Ah good, another non-component Shimano product that I will never buy
  • 1 0
 Cool shorts, but 7Mesh already makes a Revo short.
  • 1 1
 Oh cool something to finally match your fugly fox fork!
  • 1 1
 Those are cool shorts
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