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Kona Founders Buy Brand Back from Kent Outdoors

May 20, 2024
by Ed Spratt  
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Kona Bikes founders Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have purchased the brand back from Kent Outdoors after news last month of the intent to sell the company.

After selling the brand to Kent Outdoors in 2022, it has been announced today that Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have purchased the brand back and will be reuniting with "a team of dedicated, experienced Kona employees." The first priority for the brand is said to be "renewing relationships" with its North American and European dealer network as the brand will be "pausing D2C for all bikes."

Currently, the company says that "Kona inventory is headed to our warehouse and distributors" with some new bikes being worked on that will be unveiled in the future. The press release also states that it hopes to be able to price bikes more competitively although it says "we’ll never do a BOGO Sale again, so don’t ask."

It's great to see Kona looking more stable for the future and you can read the full press release below.

bigquotesKona Bicycles has been in the news lately. We’d love to say that it’s because the new Ouroboros is blowing everyone’s minds (because it really is that good), but truthfully, it has been a bumpy couple of years. So, it’s time to print a positive headline: Kona is returning home to its roots.

Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have purchased the brand back from Kent Outdoors, and along with a team of dedicated, experienced Kona employees, are reuniting to keep the Long, Sweet Ride rolling. There are a lot of familiar faces here who you know from epic dealer launches, My Kona videos and trail days who are dedicated to the cause. Kona’s employees, dealers, and our dedicated customers have always been our strongest resource, and they keep on jamming to the beat of their own drum. With this return to being rider-owned and operated, we’re doubling down on our unique brand legacy and getting back to some basics.

Renewing relationships with our nearly 1000-strong North American and European dealer network is our highest priority. Most of us started out in bike shops, and in our eyes, IBDs are our strongest advocates and allies. Healthy retailers are integral to making sure that Kona fans everywhere experience the ride of a lifetime. To best honor our dealer relationships, we are pausing D2C for all bikes. Konaworld will show changes to reflect this, and our social and communications channels will be getting reworked as well once we get things rolling. Bear with us, and we will keep you informed as we move through this transition.

On the bike side, new Kona inventory is headed to our warehouse and distributors, and alongside the freshly released Ouroboros, we’ve got some incredible bikes in the pipeline that we are looking forward to unveiling. We’re beyond grateful for the support that our suppliers have shown us in this endeavor. Vendors like Fairly Bikes, who have been with us since our first bike in 1988, are a testament to the value of longstanding relationships where people take care of people.

In more good news, we are now positioned to price our bikes much more competitively. Private ownership allows us to be more streamlined, more flexible, and quicker on our feet. This, combined with the support of our suppliers, means we can deliver high quality bikes in a distinctly Kona flavor at super attractive prices. We’ll never do a BOGO Sale again, so don’t ask, but we promise to offer good value for good money, always.

Our Pacific Northwest roots are as strong as ever. Offices in Ferndale, WA and North Vancouver, BC continue to anchor us proudly in place. Tenacious, resilient, straight talking, gritty and sometimes covered in grease, we are committed to keeping the distinctly Kona flavored bike buzz flowing, and helping people find freedom and fun. We are back. We are still here. Let’s ride.

Welcome back to the smallest biggest bike company in the world.
Kona Bikes


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340 Comments
  • 954 2
 This is the best news I've heard from the bike industry in a long time.
  • 53 0
 YES!!!
  • 76 0
 It definitely shows the passion the owners have for the brand they created.
  • 90 11
 Id love a Kona…with a threaded bottom bracket!!!
  • 14 0
 @wobblegoblin: and 'm'etal.
  • 46 0
 @fartymarty: A full sus steel ESD? I’d ride the heck out of that.
  • 8 0
 @wobblegoblin: I got a 2011 Caldera with your name on it
  • 13 2
 Get Sam Hill back on!
  • 26 0
 I’m cautiously optimistic. It’s a step in the right direction, but they’re not quite out of the woods. It is the best thing that could happen given the circumstances.
  • 46 3
 @fartymarty: Right? Cut the carbon. Aside from weight/ride quality/etc., the biggest reason to do it now is in-frame storage and none of their bikes have it so... Lets go back to reasonably priced, metal, reliable workhorses please.
  • 13 2
 Well said, time to get PE pump and dump money out of of the industry. Kona, welcome back to the table!
  • 3 0
 @dreamlink87: I'm in for that! Love my ESD
  • 3 0
 Okayyyyy, let's gooo
  • 9 0
 @TheR: it's mainly a MTB brand. Made to be in the woods...
  • 17 3
 @iduckett: lol if you cut out all the big reasons for carbon and every other reason for carbon then yes, frame storage becomes the biggest reason.
  • 5 0
 @MidwestMountains: my aluminum bike has storage….and you can get a stumpy evo alloy for $999 now.
  • 1 0
 @cutamerc: did I miss this, or do you mean Connor? I've always liked the Kona.
  • 16 0
 I hope they robbed the outdoor conglomerate blind too. Sold at the height of the frenzy, bought it back right before the cost cutting corporate douches ran into the ground.
  • 11 3
 @wobblegoblin: the PF bb’s on my Kona’s have outlasted my external bb’s on all my other bikes
  • 3 19
flag wobblegoblin (May 20, 2024 at 21:37) (Below Threshold)
 @dabikes: don’t care.
  • 1 0
 What a relief ! Such an iconic freeride brand ! Still remember my first Kona Stinky...
  • 2 2
 @MidwestMountains: Yes, true, I guess I meant to say the other major carbon benefits are debatable/subjective, whereas in-frame storage is really a good thing for everyone (if it’s done right).
  • 10 3
 @wobblegoblin: All bikes should have a threaded BB imo.
  • 12 2
 @iduckett:
My in frame storage stays empty 95% of the time. I lived without it for 25 years and could pass on it altogether. It is a neat concept that's about it... Just my $0.02
  • 2 0
 @foggnm: it depends on where you live, but here it's quite muddy and a saddlepack exposes your tools to rust. I don't wear a backpack because my rides are rarely more than 1.5 hours. Besides, for a guy like me who constantly forgets and loses everything, wasting an absurd amount of time in searching after my stuff every time I leave the house, the glove box and the EDC pump really helped me lot. I can leave everything there no matter if I take a pack or not.
  • 1 1
 @freebikeur: In my experience, the Ortlieb Micro Two saddle pack has been waterproof.
  • 185 0
 This is great. What would really be the icing on the cake is if they paid significantly less to buy back than they sold for.
  • 17 0
 Got to be!
  • 79 0
 "Sell the dream, buy the nightmare"
  • 14 0
 There is no doubt they got a deep discount
  • 60 0
 Buy one get one.
  • 2 0
 I think it's called 'fresh investment'. Lol
  • 18 2
 It’s the Dave Portnoy play.
  • 7 1
 Probably not as good as the Barstool Sports deal, but I am guessing the margins are similar.

Edit: Sorry gmiller720, missed your comment
  • 1 0
 @stephenthesquirrel: "capital infusion"
  • 11 1
 What would be real icing on the cake is if they reached out to former employees that lost jobs due to Kent’s acquisition and offered them more money to come back.
  • 2 0
 Oh, they did.
  • 5 2
 Sell high, buy low. They knew all along...
  • 7 0
 Probably not too dissimilar to when the people who sold Rossignol to Quicksilver for $300+ million bought it back two years later for $125ish million.
www.wsj.com/articles/SB121984587178176501
  • 1 2
 @foreverforum260: More like buy high, sell high.
  • 7 0
 @lirch1: they did. A few started back today.
  • 113 15
 This is 'potentially' good news.

A couple of things though.

Kent Outdoors are hardly venture capitalists. They are a privately owned Water Sports company that decided to move into bikes. Loads of MTB brands come from backgrounds outside of MTB. Plenty of brands made Road and/or BMX before MTB's and some come from Skating (Santa Cruz), Water Sports (Orange), Skiing (Scott), etc.
I'm sure Kent Outdoors bought Kona with good intentions, yes they definitely would have wanted to make profits but they wouldn't have been planning on huge percentage increases in sales, massive cost cutting or flipping shortly after buying. I just don't think they were cut out for how complex the bike trade is and foreseen the post-covid difficulties.

How good were Kona bikes before they were sold to Kent Outdoors? What was Kona's market share when the sale was made? I might be wrong but Kona seemed to me to be on a decline for quite a while before the sale in 2022. Kona was a desirable brand in the early 90's steel hardtail days and seemed to have strong sales in the late 90's early 00's Freeride period. In at least the last 10 years the MTB market has been driven by the Trail and Enduro bike sectors and Kona have had very few hits, maybe with the exceptions of early iterations of the Process and Honzo.

So I'm sure Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have bought the company back for less than what they sold it for and hopefully they can reinvest that cash and get the brand back to where it was 25 years ago. These are the guys that were in charge for 20 years of the decline though.
  • 16 1
 Hopefully, they can pull it off. R&D costs a lot. Their last competitive bikes were the mid 20-teens with the Process range. Would be such a great story for a solid comeback.
  • 50 1
 You beat me to it. These guys oversaw the downfall of the brand and unloaded it before it fully went under. Hopefully there's been a mental reckoning and they will not pick up where they left off, producing underwhelming bikes, and charging too much for them. Cautiously optimistic
  • 23 3
 Sure thing dude. 2022: “ Seawall Capital, the private equity owner of Kent Watersports, announced today the company’s rebrand to Kent Outdoors – a transformation that signals Kent’s expanded focus on the full breadth of outdoor recreation activities. In addition, Kent Outdoors is also announcing the acquisitions of BOTE and Kona Bicycles, both pioneering brands in their respective categories.”
  • 19 0
 The 2019-2020 Process 153 is one of the best bikes I’ve ever ridden. I agree that models were priced poorly for their spec, and that might have been part of their problem, but they were built on a solid foundation in terms of design. We’ll see what happens.
  • 4 3
 @Phillyenduro: Sure thing dude. 2024. Kent Outdoors, privately owned. Not owned by Seawall Capital. You need to move with the times
  • 7 7
 @Phillyenduro: What are you getting at? That Kona's decline in the marketplace was 100% due to Seawall/Kent? You can't be serious.
  • 3 2
 @TheR: Why are you selling yours?
  • 10 1
 @ATXZJ: Cause every few years it’s fun to get a new bike. That’s it. That’s the whole reason. I found a bike I wanted to try at a great price, and I don’t need two.
  • 2 1
 @TheR: fair point. what are you getting?
  • 8 0
 @ATXZJ: I now have a Canfield Lithium.
  • 3 2
 @ATXZJ: Then why did they sell it? It the company was doing great, there is no good reason to get out, especially since buying it back just 2 years later shows that it's pretty obvious they didn't want to leave.
  • 12 0
 Yep, Kona had been having major issues well before 2022.
  • 4 2
 @ATXZJ: I was responding to OP, not you. He asserted, “Kent Outdoors are hardly venture capitalists. They are a privately owned Water Sports company that decided to move into bikes.” But actually Kent were owned by venture capitalists when they bought Kona in 2022.
  • 1 2
 @jayacheess: Glad to see us finally agree!!
  • 1 2
 @TheR: Good choice.
  • 2 5
 @Phillyenduro: Semantics? You posted in the PB forum. As you know, all bets are off LoL.
  • 2 1
 @justinfoil: I don't really understand your comment. You seem to be confirming my point.

To me, this is the equivalent to everyone getting nostalgic that Eddie Lampert is buying Sears IP and bringing it back.
  • 9 0
 I think the difference here is that SC, Scott, and Orange all started up bike businesses internally, and didn't buy pre existing established brands to add to a portfolio. Kona bikes were pioneering, especially with the Process line and the Hei Hei from 2015 onwards (they did single pivot flex stay xc race bikes well before many of the bigger players). But there is this weird thing where a lot of people write off single pivot bikes wholesale, and I think that's part of what lead to them starting to decline because people decided they wanted something else, regardless of how good they are. I also don't think they ever offered a bike with 27.5+ wheels and tires, which most people now look back on as a bad idea, but they were very popular for a few years and weren't offered by the brand.
  • 2 1
 @eae903: they had a honzo+
  • 5 0
 @Phillyenduro: not sure why you’re being downvoted. Lol.
  • 23 0
 new stinky deelux please. also hope marzocchi makes another shiver
  • 7 0
 Kent Outdoors is a front for Private Equity, it exists to limit the investor's liability if their borrow money, buy company, hope for growth model goes sideways. What's so weird about these groups is how many of them bought in 2022, even in 2022 the Covid bubble had clearly burst and the explosive sales were over. But apparently that was the time to load up on debt and hope for the best...
  • 2 0
 @ATXZJ: you have me there, I forgot about that one. They didn't have any high end fs 27.5+ bikes at least
  • 18 2
 100% - I don't really get all of the sympathy and/or hero-fication of the founders of all of these companies who sold off their company. I'm not saying they shouldn't have (heck, if I could start a company and then sell it for millions I certainly would) but everyone acts like these big bad companies came in, swindled the poor founders, and made the companies inherently worse.

Certainly that has happened, but I don't see that being the case for every company. More capital behind a brand and it's engineers can yield some really desirable outcomes and as long as the company doesn't lose sight of itself, I don't see any reason to write them off just because they have a new owner.
  • 10 4
 Kona absolutely dominated the new world disorder era and stuck to their guns of making fun to ride bikes in the enduro era when everyone was trying to be Richie Rude at the local enduro event and struggled as result. Now that racing has died a death and everyone’s gone back to just riding for fun it’s good we’ve still got companies like Kona or Airdrop in the UK concentrating on making bikes that are just fun to ride for the 99.9% of us who don’t race.
  • 4 1
 Orange didn’t start off in watersports it has always been a bike firm, Lester Noble, one of the founders was a sailor / windsurfer and involved with a sail manufacturer before setting up Orange.
  • 4 1
 Hey heh-you said water sports.
  • 5 0
 @eae903: Kona process 153 27.5 wheels, still got it, well my son does.
  • 3 2
 @ATXZJ: You claim there was no decline when they were there. If so, why would they sell a nice, successful, and allegedly not declining, company that the claimed to feel so deeply about?
  • 1 0
 @justinfoil: I never stated the was no decline. Are you using google translate?
  • 12 0
 Numbers I heard from a Kona rep today were they sold it for $78 million and bought it back for $10 million! I had a 2015 Kona operator that i loved and a 2018 process 153 that is still my favorite trail bike of all time. I think they stagnated after the first process line. They were also over priced for the spec and lots of better value options were entering the market. Covid just made it worse. I don't understand why these og bike brand owner/ founders aren't grooming key employees to do structured buy outs? It is riskier and the pay day comes slower but it will preserve the culture and heritage of the brand. Though making 68 million and getting your baby back doesn't sound too shabby. Though i'm sure they will have to pump some cash into it to get back where it needs to be.
  • 5 0
 @cypher74: Just to be super pedantic, the very first bikes that would become Orange were branded Tushingham (Tushingham B52), but Roger decided he didn't want to get into bikes properly because his sail business was expanding, Lester was one of his sponsored windsurfers. Steve and Lester went off on their own and Orange was born.
  • 5 0
 @Struggleteam: or transfer ownership to the employees with an ESOP program. It's a genuine mark of quality when you see ESOPs in the market. I think Cane Creek might be the only one in the bike world.
  • 3 4
 Yeah-Kona never licensed or developed a good full suspension platform, so when other companies cracked the code and started making big bikes that go uphill well, Kona gradually lost market share.

If they tighten up their line and make bikes that don’t suck to pedal, they can do well. If it’s more of the same (as with the same owners) they’ll be gone in 3-5 years.
  • 5 2
 @wyorider: that's the exact attitude I'm talking about. Single pivots can pedal very well and every kona that I've ridden, process 134, 153, X, Hei Hei, have all been great pedaling bikes. At the same time, I've ridden Horst link bikes (cough cough 2017 specialized stump jumper cough cough) that have pedaled like absolute shit. Try a current Kona and it will pedal well, descend well, and be a hell of a lot of fun.
  • 6 0
 @eae903: Yep. One of the things that impressed me most and got me to buy a 153 was that I rented one in Moab and was surprised by how well it pedaled for such a big, heavy beast of a bike it was. That was the aluminum “base” model. I eventually bought a carbon version, and it was great. More efficient than the DW-linked bike that it replaced, and far more plush. When people say it doesn’t climb well — that wasn’t my experience.
  • 1 0
 @gasman1: you fit plus size tires in it? Bigger than 2.5?
  • 1 2
 @Struggleteam: Unless they assumed some debt with that $10M I have a hard time believing that. Surely just the IP is worth a few million.
  • 6 1
 Can't blame most of the decline on Dan and Jake. There was a lot of backstabbing going on within the company about 10 years ago involving upper management and engineers. In fact, many of Kona's innovative designs were stolen and were produced by other brands.

Per the article, Dan and Jake want to get back to basics. Kona was founded on grass roots. Making a quality bike for a value pricing package and with an "attitude". They've already hired back some guys that brought that 'attitude". They've also got some young and talented rides like Eddie Reynolds that could really help to get the Kona brand headed in a more progressive direction.

If these guys remain true to the brand, I think we'll see them more in the Surly, Salsa, YT market than trying to compete with the Giants, Treks, Specialized. Possibly keep it streamlined to having just only 20 bike models that keep progressing to market demands.

It's going to be interesting to watch Kona in the next 2 years. I think they might surprise a lot of doubters.
  • 3 3
 @wyorider: Maybe license the DW link, now that it’s off patent
  • 3 0
 @wyorider: I think you’re spot on. Going forward licensing DW or something similar would certainly add to cost and Kona doesn’t have the appeal at that level (I don’t think). Best bet is maybe a trusty four bar with good shock tuning? It will be interesting.
  • 6 0
 @Struggleteam: Wow, crazy that brand was worth 78 million
  • 2 1
 @GTscoob: There are so many ways to do it without selling to private equity or becoming corporate. You just have to identify the people with potential and drive to pull it off well in advance.
  • 2 0
 Kent Outdoors is owned by Seawall Capital. Kent Outdoors is not a private equity firm but Seawall is. You can thank transparency laws regarding private equity firms for the ensuing blame game that is akin to a dog chasing it's tail.
  • 3 0
 @E30: I have a hard time believing that was the original sale price
  • 11 0
 @HumpDiesel: Everyone drinks the DW Kool-Aid for some reason. They don’t need a DW-Link. The Kona Beamer suspension works great. Before I had my Process, I had a Turner RFX with a DW Link. The Process Beamer suspension was more efficient on climbs and way smoother and composed than the DW on descents. That’s not to say DW isn’t good — it’s perfectly adequate. It’s just not this magic thing that’s head and tails above everything else.

What Kona really needs to do is continue to design fun bikes that just plow, and price their bikes a little more in line with their spec. And put some decent wheels on those bad boys.
  • 1 1
 @sfarnum:

Yeah those numbers do seem pretty extreme. But... a fractured distribution network, overpriced bikes, inventory they can't move, a dying brand image... at this point I think Kent was more than happy to offload the brand and get a few american pesos out of it rather than closing the doors and getting nothing which was where things were headed. It may have been worth (only) $10M to pass the headache on to someone else.

The new (old) owners basically have to build back trust and interest in the brand from almost nothing and in an insanely competitive market. No hate just my thoughts. Prior 111 owner here.
  • 1 1
 > So I'm sure Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have bought the company back for less than what they sold it for and hopefully they can reinvest that cash and get the brand back to where it was 25 years ago. These are the guys that were in charge for 20 years of the decline though.

You might wonder if they sold so that someone else do the ugly job of firing employees so the optics are better for them.
  • 5 0
 @WasatchEnduro: The old owners buying it back will instill some trust. Now they gotta keep building that trust — and they gotta move fast. Sitting on a 4-year-old lineup won’t do anything for them. I mentioned somewhere else I think this is a positive step. Now they can’t squander it.
  • 2 0
 @WasatchEnduro: is it competitive? I think there's room for a brand with a different vibe in the market, especially since some other small players like GG have disappeared
  • 2 0
 I agree with your assessment from a consumers point of view. The brand has lacked innovation. They've held on to staples like the Honzo and Process that were hot years ago, but now hardly keep pace with offerings from other brands. In response, they simply decided to be the budget brand and water down their builds. I have no idea if this was a strategic move that didn't land like they hoped, or if they were forced into that position due to cashflow constraints. This is coming from someone who's always been a big Kona fan. I've owned six Kona's prior to 2014.
  • 2 0
 @Fix-the-Spade: Interesting bit of UK windsurfing/mtb crossover history.
  • 3 0
 @rsvpnsnsnnp: Would be interested to know more about where the designs went off to?

Definitely hoping to see this as a chance for the Kona I used to know to resurface. The kinds of bikes a new but aggressive rider can afford and not break with some funky names and fun colors.
  • 12 0
 @Jodaro: Process X (from 2021) was pretty innovative with adjustable chainstays, mullet flip chip, still current geo, carbon and decently light for how strong they are. Others are just catching up now.

I agree that the builds/value went downhill, but the core design is pretty rad. I'm old and picky and built my Process X from the frame...but man if you're trying to find a modern, cheap used frame...it's hard to beat.

They should have called it the Stinky instead of Process X!

Mine pedals fine, this DW link talk is dumb. I owned the OG 153, a carbon 153, a 111, and a 134. All absolutely fantastic bikes that were ahead of the game in terms of long reach, slack angles, and SHORT straight seat tubes. Seems minor, but as a long torso/short leg build...Kona was one of the only companies building bikes that worked for me at the time.

Transition pushed the industry shortly after with the reduced offset forks, shorter seat tubes, longer reach.

Yes there are smaller companies that really push geo (Pole, etc.), but I swear Kona and Transition are the ones that accelerated larger manufacturers into what we call "modern" geo.

100% I'm a fanboy of both brands .
  • 1 0
 @gasman1: Yup, they also had a Process 134 in 27.5 as well. I've got the 29er but wish I had the 27.5. I may still end up with a 153!
  • 95 0
 bring back the 111!
  • 3 0
 Fo Sho!!!
  • 15 0
 operator too.... other end of the spectrum.
  • 7 0
 The 111 was so good!
  • 6 1
 The 111 is killer but why not ride the newest Hei Hei?
  • 25 2
 @eae903: I have no doubt the hei hei is great on the right trails, but I imagine an updated 111 would be lower, slacker, longer (more capable), while still keeping a light frame and good pedaling characteristics.
XC bike vs. short travel trail bike.

SID bike vs. Pike bike
32 bike vs. 34 bike
  • 31 1
 Chris Mandell was the guy driving the culture that produced the 111. When he left to Sram there was a brain drain that followed. The remaining team gave us warmed over bikes that looked like trek and rolling papers. I loved the 111 and had two of them
  • 3 0
 I support this tremendously.
  • 3 0
 @steezysam: Hei Hei comes with sid 35 or Fox 34 though.....
  • 11 1
 Having had the 111, the current Hei Hei with a 130 Pike is better in every regard.
  • 4 0
 The original process line was so gooooood. Something about that suspension design was brilliant. I'd love them to get back to making unique and FUN bikes again! The current fleet is way too cookie-cutter for Kona
  • 8 0
 @ATXZJ: The Process 111 and the original Honzo were groundbreaking bikes. No other mainstream brand would dare to release anything similar then.
  • 7 1
 @steezysam: I feel like you're working really hard to not say "downcountry."

It's OK. Embrace it. Let the hate flow through you.
  • 1 0
 @atourgates: Never. I'll never turn to the dark side.

JK I'm down with downcountry, but I think the Hei Hei (esp. with a pike/34) is downcountry and the 111 would be a light, short travel trail bike. right?
  • 2 0
 With a new linkage, yes.
  • 7 0
 @steezysam: Hi, I'm regular Sam. Anyways, I can confirm that putting a 130mm Pike and a Super Deluxe in my 2020 Hei Hei was the magnificent 111 replacement I wanted.
  • 3 0
 Too late. The Transition Spur beat them to the punch.
  • 1 0
 Hell yeah brother
  • 1 0
 @eae903: I don't feel like I'd want to jump the Hei Hei - maybe it's just the marketing but I'd feel totally fine taking a 111 to a bike park.
  • 3 0
 @ATXZJ: I wonder what drove him away from Kona or to Sram.
I had been loving my Process 134 and it seemed like Kona was doing the best it had done in ages, so was sad to see him go, and things did seem to decline. And well at least many bikes started looking like they'd run into a tree with that cray top tube bend.
  • 1 0
 @rsvpnsnsnnp: That thing does look awesome. Or the new Reeb.
  • 2 0
 @davemays: man I’ve been on a Reeb sst since December and I love it. They fit a little weird but once I got that dialed the bike is amazing. Pedals like a hardtail and smashes like a enduro bike. Awesome guys to deal with as well. Also The steezl with both a 140mm &155mm shock would be a quiver killer setup as well. Hope they make a dh rig soon. I’ll be all over that.
  • 2 0
 @davemays: The hei hei jumps just fine. I've done plenty of jumping on 2 generations now
  • 1 0
 @Struggleteam: Love my REEB SST too, to me it feels like riding my Honzo, but has more grip on the climb and can take those bigger hits with ease; plus, it comes in at the same weight. it's kinda a win,win,win unless your going SS.
  • 2 0
 @matyk: Shameless promo: someone here go buy my hei hei in buy/sell
  • 1 0
 @csvetich: how much does the SST weigh? what's the build? very intrigued by that bike
  • 1 0
 @rsvpnsnsnnp: Two water bottles on the Hei Hei though
  • 1 0
 @steezysam: my sst is size L, shimano 12sp xt(xtr cassette), fox 36 140mm, dhx2(sls spring), i9 hydra/stans flow mk3(aluminum), maxxis 2.4" dissector(dh casing) rear, exo 2.5" assegai front, one up 240mm v2(full stuffed in the st!), with pedals; water bottle holder, two light mounts

i just weighed it 5 times on a park scale and its about ~33lbs 10oz

my honzo was a xt build fox 34 hitting in at about mid 33lbs and it don't have a rear shock...

the sst I could ride it for hours on end, its a very comfortable bike; plus i can lap the jump lines repeatedly if i'm just hanging with the bros(nomads,bronsons processes with more travel) hitting doubles and table tops etc.
  • 1 0
 @csvetich: cool, thanks for the info!
  • 46 0
 Just fired up Nwd II on vhs as a celebration
  • 41 0
 I feel like Kona's best bet is to reinvent themselves as the North American answer to Commencal. High quality aluminum bikes that are built for the long haul, and solid commuter and kids options. They're not going to be able to compete with Trek /Specialized/Giant/Cannondale, so they definitely need to drop a number of models. The Ouroboros seems great, but I wonder if it will actually extend the brands appeal beyond mountain bikers looking for a road-ish bike. If I were in charge, I'd drop basically everything but the Process series (bring back the 111!), the Honzo, the Dew series and the Jake and then streamline the kids offerings into two distinct lines, one commuter, one mountain. Scale back production, commit to consumer-direct while supporting local shops, and hope for the best.
  • 5 0
 Yep. I went searching for "Kona Ouroboros," and what I found was not overwhelming. I am not among those who bought a Cinder Cone in 1996 (after two Breezer Storms) and now somehow wants a road-ish bike. I'm now in my 50s and will be riding my Pole Evolink until it blows up (speaking of another company that had its share of some innovative, industry-transforming moments...). When it does, I will not be shopping for an Ouroboros.
  • 10 1
 You kinda just described Knolly. Still much smaller than Kona, but with their recent new redesigns and models… they’re on their way.
  • 4 0
 The Unit was pretty good too but then I spose its just an updated version of a 90s Kona anyway! Rigid and steel !
  • 3 0
 @islandforlife: knolly is pretty boutique tho. premium designs and quality as opposed to workhorse
  • 1 1
 This probably would have happened if passionate new energy had bought the company. I'm afraid that we'll just see more of the same Kona pre-Kent complacency. History has a way of repeating itself.
  • 9 0
 I’d love for them to bring back modern versions of their classics like the stinky, stab, stuff, unit, etc and ditch the “progress 153” type of model names that just didn’t have appeal.
  • 1 0
 Sounds like a solid game-plan to me.
  • 2 0
 @islandforlife: and Banshee
  • 4 0
 Bring back cheap alloy.
  • 1 0
 You forgot the Unit. IMO their best model along with the Honzo.
  • 1 0
 @mkul7r4: I remember taking a Unit out for one of my first actual mountain bike rides when I lived in Bellingham way back when, assuming that I was naturally strong enough to will a fully rigid singlespeed around the Galbraith trails. That ride did not go well. That being said, I have fond memories of that bike. Also though, "fully rigid singlespeed mtb" is a very niche product, and probably wouldn't be the smartest thing for Kona to spend money producing when there's no way it's going to be profitable to do so.
  • 5 0
 The Process series should go back to the throwback names. Bring back the Stinky name, with a fun DH bike called the Stab and the middle aged guys who owned NWD on VHS will be standing in line to re-live the heydays. Now if we can only convince Brodie to bring out a new 8-Ball
  • 1 0
 @ShawMac: haha, you ain't kidding. I've got a Kona credit card set aside for a new Stinky-Deelux.

Oh the 8-Ball. I loved that bike too, man. Squamish heyday for sure!
  • 1 0
 @winkydee: I lived up in Williams Lake and Prince George during those times, and I couldn't afford any of those bikes. I just drooled over my riding buddies'. I had to flog my GT iDrive 3.0 as if it was a freeride bike. I can't believe it (and I) survived.
  • 40 1
 I think we will see a lot of bike companies returning to the original founders / 'bike people' as the venture capitalists realise the industry isn't going to grow like tech companies can.
  • 3 2
 And, venture capitalist boards require quarterly gains, including those times when the northern hemisphere is covered (usually) in snow. It's seasonal and almost a niche market. Unless you introduce a model everyone must have, expect it to fluctuate year round, not gain 12%-20% a year.
  • 13 1
 @pizzaordie: we ain’t all finance bro’s, put the gillet down.
  • 33 0
 If they release a new single crown stinky I’m buying one in a f*cking heartbeat. Please please please please please please
  • 8 0
 The Norco Shore kind of reminds me of an updated Stinky (the spirit of it anyway).
  • 1 0
 @rrolly: Yah newest crop of burlier long travel gravity / enduro type bikes really fill that void now.
  • 16 0
 I've got a Process X coil front and rear. It's really really good. ...but yeah I'll be honest I'd like it better if it said Stinky on it!
  • 5 0
 The old 167s and 165s were where its at. I'm sure the new 'X' model is okay, but the bike needs to be shorter and dual 27 to really have that fun old school Kona feel. I doubt that's what they will make as the market isn't necessarily buying it right now... But spec it well and price it well and it will still sell like hotcakes a la Marin Rift Zone
  • 3 0
 They absolutely will not be releasing anything new for several years. The best we can hope for is a rebadge/rebrand of existing models.
  • 27 0
 Kona making a come back is precisely the moment to BRING BACK THE STINKY!!!!
  • 17 2
 Great to see! Bikes are for riding, not for investment companies. They can have the ICT companies if they really need something to chew on. Starling has done something similar iirc and obviously Scott does things their own way. I know too little about the business side of things but for me it seems like things are looking bright now.
  • 19 1
 Absolute best outcome.
  • 15 0
 naptime (Apr 19, 2024 at 20:32)
My fantasy would be Kona is sold back to the original owners an goes back to being "the biggest little bike company

This guy called it
  • 11 0
 Finally a rad bike company back in the hands of people who are passionate about it instead of some faceless corporation that has no interest in the brand other than increasing shareholder profit. Excited to see what they come up with!
  • 12 0
 Make the Stinky geat again!
  • 11 0
 C'mon Nukeproof...do what they did.
  • 1 0
 Fraser group isn't as forgiving I'm afraid.
  • 10 0
 I see no BOGO, but what about a free bike with the purchase of a new Ford Focus?
  • 7 1
 What about a free Kona Honzo with the purchase of a new 2024 Hyundai Kona?
  • 5 0
 @sfarnum: I'd rather just buy a Kona Honzo without having a car that might catch on fire while driving, or parked in my garage
  • 2 0
 @DizzyNinja: I think that would be a fair trade actually.
  • 4 1
 @DizzyNinja: Battery electric vehicles catch fire much less frequently than gasoline cars, but much more frequently than Kona Honzos: www.motortrend.com/features/you-are-wrong-about-ev-fires
  • 2 1
 @sfarnum: Where did you make the inference I was talking about EVs?
  • 5 1
 @DizzyNinja: The Kona (car) is available as an electric model. Widely publicized coverage of electric car fires has led to the misconception that they’re more fire-prone than ICE cars, so when you randomly offered a non-sequitur about a car bursting into flames I assumed you were referencing that.
  • 7 0
 This are great news to start a monday! Lets gooooo!!! bring back the stinky deluxe!
  • 5 1
 Awesome news! I'd love to know how the deal worked out. I assume they had some long term payout from the original deal and didn't get all of it. But hopefully, they got a deal buying the IP back and some leftover to get it rolling again. Seeing a PE group eat it on a deal is kind of entertaining.
  • 4 0
 I always thought that Kona was a cool company, owned a hardtail years ago and had fun riding it around town. I think Transition took over as the "cool bike company" around 2015-2016. The Giddy up and fun gimmicky marketing (that was actually better bikes, just their fun way of doing things) made them stand out. They became the new cool company and had great bikes to back it up. I hope they pull it back together and return their roots.
  • 3 0
 This was my impression as well, and was reinforced when I moved to Bellingham. Plenty of old Kona on marketplace, LOADS of Transition on the trails. Evil getting a piece of that pie as well.
  • 7 0
 One more vote for: best news in bike industry in recent memory.
  • 7 0
 Bring back the old kona!!
  • 6 1
 They are not my cuppa tea nowadays but I have a sweet spot for the brand. My first proper MTB was a Cinder Cone when of yous were not even born. Good news indeed.
  • 4 0
 My first was a cinder cone too. After a brief stint on a bunch of RM6s that broke and. GT DHi, I returned to the tank of a bike Stab Dee Lux. Still have that beast of a frame. NWD and Kona forever!
  • 2 0
 @Axl085: Oh aye, I also had a Stinky dee-luxe years later! That thing was heavy AF. Good memories!!!!!
  • 4 0
 Fun fact, we still have my wife's Cinder Cone that she raced on in High school. Currently donated as a local airport "get around" bike for visiting pilots.
  • 5 0
 Sick, now bring back the classic names and feel of the brand! Stinky, stab, entourage. There are too many process bikes to keep track of. Let’s go!
  • 11 0
 Kona is probably the only brand with the pedigree to ride the retro wave and reimagine classics from their back catalog. They'd better not suck at the execution though.
  • 1 0
 @tiaalto: right??
  • 6 0
 Wow, best possible outcome. Bring back the HumuHumu!
  • 4 0
 ...nukunukuapua'aa
  • 4 0
 Seriously, great to hear. Now steepen up those seat angles and straighten some top tubes and we'll be on the road to victory...
  • 2 0
 Ohhh thanks KONA for one good news out of this miserable market we developed... Happy to be able to say... I have been a loyal Kona Rider for many many years...This article just refreshed my motivation to go out and shred my Process even it is raining cars and trucks lately... BIG RESPECT KONA, KEEP ON MAKING REAL BIKES WHICH ARE ACTUALLY REALLY GOOD TO RIDE!!
  • 2 0
 I look at a company like Marin or even Ibis AF bikes and think this could be the way for Kona to go. Great geo, low BS, true value for riders who actually care but don't feel like spending on features/materials that don't add all that much to the experience. The anti-dentist bike. Design and ideas are relatively cheap and its cool thinking that made kona interesting.

Mullet Honzo?
Steel Process 111?
Cheap Park Bikes??
  • 5 0
 Stoked to see this - Cheers, Kona!!
  • 5 0
 I'm so happy to hear this. F YEAH My next bike will be a Kona
  • 2 0
 I'd buy a Kona commuter or hardtail, but they'd have to bring back and update the Process 111 to make me want to buy one of their mountain bikes.
  • 1 0
 @skywalkdontrun: Should try the Hei Hei, absolutely my favorite bike I've ever owned.
  • 1 0
 @Gingerpele: I've ridden one. It was...fine, but it's not on the level of the new Epic or Top Fuel or really any of the modern short travel dxc bikes right now. Carbon is also expensive to source and lay up, and if Kona is going to have to scale back it might not be the most cost-effective way forward.
  • 5 0
 Wow, Kona gets it! This is exactly what we need to see more of.
  • 3 0
 Yeah!!!! I'm so happy. Glad that Kona is saved. Back to its roots, into the woods Smile

I am going to make a celebration trip on one of my Kona's now! So happy.
  • 2 0
 Glad to hear this news. Seawall Capital and other private equity firms should be banned from taking companies to the brink at the consequence of those that depend on the brand for their well being and livelihood.
  • 3 0
 HELL YEA! I just bought one last week for my wife, which makes 3 Konas for us Big Grin
Now, if they could just trim some models down, I think they'd have a fighting chance...
  • 5 0
 Bring Back Willy Warren!!! Free Willy!
  • 6 0
 BRING BACK THE 111.
  • 1 0
 Have owned a KONA double suspension XC bike for about 16 years. It's tough as nails and survived being ridden hard for a long time before being relegated to a backup bike. Great product. If they can return to that sort of well made and well designed product they should have success again as a company. I'm not sure where the nike industry goes from here but are bikes really selling at $5k plus all that often? Obviously they will have to develop an E-bike to keep up but they hopefully can see what the future holds and become relevant again.
  • 1 0
 honzo and explosif! st, esd and ti! i wish i had the ti honzo, oh i have a sutra too! i got them all with sliding dropouts even the sutra. they are my go to bike for hardtails ss etc. interested in seeing if the line up gets pulled back to the gems and what new will come of this.
  • 1 0
 Give us a dawg dee.luxe 29er or a new Stinky ...and.please replace whoever chooses the paint colours... So many of us don t buy Kona anymore ibecause the colours are so akward...I have had Stinky, dawg , heihei, king kilapu etc etc...great bike, solid, good geometry
  • 1 0
 Bought a used process 111 and a new pivot hardware kit on sale the day I heard they were up for sale. My old first gen 134 such a great bike. I'm a decent rider def no racer/pro and generally disappointed when testing a lot of modern bikes though there are definitely some gems. I hear a lot of echo chamber marketing BS about the modern bike geo and how I'm supposed to feel about it but I still feel like they kinda had it nailed around the end of the non boost beginning of the boost era.
  • 1 0
 Was really hoping for a buyer with more passionate and fresh energy, as history has a bad tendency of repeating itself. Cautiously optimistic about this, lets hope they can listen to and harness all their talented previous employees to help bring the brand back to life.
  • 2 0
 I think the recently released ouroboros represents good insight into the direction gravel is going. I hope the brand can capitalise on that and other strong offering, not just their mountain bikes.
  • 1 0
 Wasn't the Kona Process line a major player in the progression of mountain bike geometry to what we have today on all bikes?
Probably the biggest improvement in mountain bikes in decades. Long, low and slack. If they just could have patented it because every other bike company copied it.
It was really much more than just the line of bikes but they completely thought outside the box that existed since it all started.
I remember that awkward Bike magazine interview and all the reviews of those Process bikes and just how amazed people were with heavy alloy framed bikes with basic suspension but Kona cracked the geo code.
  • 2 0
 Interesting news. Hope they make a comeback. Be curious what they sold it for initially and what they bought it back for once it tanked.
  • 3 0
 They just bought every bike on BOGO and got the entire inventory for half the price.
  • 4 0
 Yes, FK investment companies.
  • 14 14
 In Europe Kona was for a long time overpriced as f*ck. So backing D2C will keep it overpriced. Kona did really nothing for the last 5 years too, selling the same single pivots over and over. Einstein once said that it's mad to expect different outcomes doing the same all over again.
  • 5 7
 You must be fun at parties...
  • 3 0
 Good points. Do agree they were overpriced but the Process line was pretty decent.
  • 4 0
 @bman33: he aint wrong, sorry but 5k€ ( process ) for bike with pike, sx/nx groupset, g2 brakes and i30 wheelset. Thanks, but no thanks. There are just way better options in EU for that price point of bikes, i do like Kona’s. But not sure who’s gonna buy 5k for specs you get on bikes in 2-3k price points.
  • 2 0
 Best possible outcome Now about their bike line up.... They currently have 79 models listed for their dealers That's bonkers for a medium sized brand!
  • 1 0
 Agreed - they could really whittle that down and still have a great lineup.
  • 3 0
 So hype for Kona! I don't think I've heard better news in the industry in a long time! Keeping the ride vibe alive!
  • 4 0
 Bring back Willy! The best sales rep of all time!
  • 1 0
 This is great news! Hopefully Kona will adopt a smaller nline up of versatile bike, similar to what ibis does with their bikes. Maybe a hei-hei/ 111 option, a process and an operator.
  • 1 0
 Cash out then buy it back for (my guess is damn near certain) pennies on the dollar, love it. Hope they're able to lean on their roots and bring the company back to something to care about!
  • 2 0
 Seriously, great to hear. Now steepen up those seat angles and straighten some down tubes and we'll be on the road to victory...
  • 5 0
 Ti ESD frame…….
  • 4 0
 Ouroboros taking on a whole new meaning for them..
  • 4 0
 The owners out traded private equity, well done sirs
  • 1 0
 Now they can buy the remains of Pole. As far as I can remember, the geo numbers and kinematics were not the problem. So if Kona just works a little on the design, it could be something. Whether glued or with normal tubes.
  • 1 0
 You don't have to buy a bike to support them. I was gonna say that you can buy some softgoods but for some reason there is no way to add items to a cart even though they list prices on their site.
  • 2 1
 Per the article, D2C sales are paused. Talk to your local dealer to buy anything.
  • 2 0
 @barp: Ah! I didn't think that would affect soft goods. Too bad.
  • 1 1
 @Dustfarter: Huh, actually I was wrong, because reading it again I see now that says it's paused *for bikes*. But it sounds like it actually is paused for all items, not just bikes. (shrug)
  • 2 0
 Can we bring back the 90s model names and splatter paint back please?

Also make the Wah Wah 2 pedal more available, they're impossible to find in Australia!
  • 2 3
 That's potentially really good news. Would love to see them limit themselves to a few but very capable bikes. HT, Enduro, DH and Gravel maybe. If they can build well specced bikes for a reasonable price and keep weight down and the fun up, I'd be more than happy to consider a new do-it-all. And how about a couple of 27.5 options for med and large frames??????
  • 5 2
 That is not a good idea. Trail bikes are the biggest sellers, and what most people actually want and need.
  • 4 1
 I think you’re on the right track in terms of streamlining their lineup. I’m not sure about your direction. I think I’d delay DH for a bit. Trim the gravel offering to one model. And I think I’d cut about 50 of their budget models and just keep one. And finally, no more half-assing the spec for a premium price.
  • 6 0
 They have to limit themselves to a few capable bikes THAT WILL SELL. Unfortunately that eliminates a DH rig, as they'd have to go through all the r&d to make a viable racer. They should focus on the Process line as their mountain flagships. If it was me, I'd divide into three models, the X for enduro and bike park (bonus points for mx compatability), the 134 as a do-everything 29er trail bike, and bring back the 111 as their downcountry/marathon rig. The Honzo has legs as a platform, especially if they continue to offer it in steel (the aluminum is HARSH). Drop the carbon. Keep the Dew as a commuter platform, and offer a couple of iterations of the Jake as a 'cross/gravel bike. The Ouroboros is cool, but it's not worth the cost of production.
  • 1 0
 @TheR: Yeah, short term, DH is probably not worth thinking about right now. Totally agree with cutting the lower end of the market down massively. Maybe have just one entry level bike in a few sizes.
  • 2 0
 @thevoiceofchaos: Yeah, somehow I forgot the trail option Frown I guess I was thinking "hardcore HT" for trail Smile
  • 2 0
 @Alloypenguin: a 27.5 Honzo would be a lot of fun, I'm with you on that!
  • 1 0
 @thevoiceofchaos: Maybe, but the number of people who want a do it all trail hardtail that's also 27.5 is very small.
  • 2 0
 @skywalkdontrun: We don't know that for sure perhaps. Just the market is aimed at selling 29ers and not else. They don't always give us what we want, more what they think we need.
  • 1 0
 @Alloypenguin: Or perhaps what they think they can sell.
  • 1 0
 @g-42: I can say that no one has ever come into my shop wanting a 27.5 hardtail that wasn't a child.
  • 1 0
 @skywalkdontrun: But is that due to low market visibility due to manufacturers having so few 27.5 options in their inventory or just hear say that 29ers are better overall? Genuinely curious.
  • 3 1
 I'm going to dust off my trusty 2008 Four and ride it in celebration to this awesome news!
  • 3 0
 I'll join with my 20kg 2005 Coiler Big Grin
  • 4 0
 They pulled a Mr Burns
  • 2 0
 Always had a soft spot for Kona. Hope you discard those sub-par lineup fillers - you have made far too many.
  • 1 0
 The last Kona I had and still own is the 1989 Explosif "Green with yellow splatter" . It would be great to see Kona back amongst the big players or even at a world cup.
  • 1 0
 Best news thus far this year! Went to school in Bellingham next to Kona, and was always proud to call them a home grown brand!
  • 3 0
 What a great news. Makes me want to buy a Kona again
  • 4 0
 We love you Kona!
  • 3 0
 How cool guys, we wish you the best of success!
  • 3 0
 Bring back a Kona dealer in NZ...
  • 1 0
 Incredibly positive news! My first real mountain bike was a Kona and i've had a soft spot for them ever since. Bring back the Stinky!
  • 3 0
 I kent believe it, this is kona be huge... Badabum ts
  • 2 0
 Great news! Time to bring back the 94-96 livery on modern bikes. Let’s go!
  • 1 0
 Please can we have a new version if the Process 111.with room for a 200mm dropper and updated geometry. And keep the ESD,it’s a great hardtail.
  • 2 1
 This is wonderful. If you’ve never owned a Kona then you are new to the sport of mountain biking. Everyone has owned at least one Kona if you’ve been riding long enough.
  • 3 0
 F$£# yeah!!
  • 2 0
 Fantastic news! Way to go, Dan and Jake!
  • 2 0
 wonder what they sold and bought back for?
  • 1 0
 Great news!!!!! Kona will come out swinging. These guys were the originators.
  • 1 0
 Awesome news! Always made a point of having at least one Kona in my shed since 1997. Iconic doesn't begin to describe!
  • 3 0
 It's a ProccessSmile
  • 1 0
 If they got the recent "2 for 1" deal that Kona was offering, maybe they bought a 2nd company for the 1 price?
  • 2 0
 Reissue a modern Thomas misser four bar dh bike.
  • 2 0
 This is it!! This the turning point. Nothing but good news from here on.
  • 2 0
 All I care about is the frameset option of the Honzo ST.
  • 1 0
 Woohoo! I can continue intermittently dreaming of, but never actually buying, a Unit!
  • 1 0
 Back in the late 90s and early 2000s Kona bikes were killer !! Hope they can get it back there…
  • 2 0
 This, and Robbie Bordoun back to rampage.
  • 2 0
 No questions now on who the head HONZO is now!
  • 1 1
 This is good news-now Kona needs a better pedaling platform though. Hopefully their product will be more competitive soon……
  • 3 1
 Really? I feel like my process pedals quite well
  • 2 3
 @Dogl0rd: ride anything dual link (Intense, Santa Cruz, Giant, Ibis) and you won’t think so. That’s why Kona has been on the decline for a lot of years. Their bikes are okay, but other companies make bikes that are also awesome downhill AND pedal much more efficiently.

I wish Kona the best-but they need a better platform.
  • 3 0
 @wyorider: I get the downhill aspect, pumpy and poppy instead of bump eating...

But the pedalling criticism I don't get, my bike pedals great
  • 2 0
 @wyorider: I kind of agree but kind of don't I wrote a Kona 134 29 and I would definitely take it over most intense and Santa Cruz bikes, If you've ridden anything else VPP can be kind of miserable . VPP loses any semblance of suspension under power and the braking isn't so great either, lots of marketing involved with those two. The I rode felt a lot like a horste to link bike Even though I believe it's a link is driven single pivot. I'd say it without climb an intense or a Santa Cruz on anything loose but they're not hard bikes to outclimb on anything other than a fire road.
  • 2 0
 Amazing news, I'm going to the garage to hug my Honzo now
  • 2 0
 I wonder if they will re-establish their pro rider teams.
  • 2 0
 Bring Back Buck and a 2025 Kona Honzo ESD
  • 2 0
 BRING BACK THE STAB PRIMO!!!
  • 2 0
 Love Kona and always have loved Kona
  • 2 0
 Let's freeride again !!!!!
  • 1 0
 Sick, I've had a few Kona bikes over the years, it's great news that I'll be able to add to that tally.
  • 2 0
 I could use a cheap, metal, updated Process 111 in my life.
  • 1 0
 So the 2 guys who were at the helm for the first 10(?) yrs of Konas decline is back..... hmmmmm
  • 1 0
 Opposite news at Revel owners sold out to PE.
I wonder which method works out better in the long run?
  • 2 0
 Sweet! Here’s hoping that Pole gets saved too!
  • 2 0
 Awesome.
  • 2 0
 Holy Shit
  • 2 0
 Hell yeah!!!
  • 1 0
 Great news. I just don't get it why the sold it in the first place...
  • 1 0
 Get these private equity mba dweeb bean counters out of the bike industry
  • 1 0
 dump the Ourobros into the sea and bring back cx race bikes!
  • 1 0
 Great news! Make a flat bar Ouroboros!
  • 1 0
 Kona is back ON my short list of next new bike !!!
  • 1 0
 I've always wondered why D2C seems so hard in bikes.
  • 4 0
 Shipping, assembly, servicing, and liability.
  • 1 0
 it's just a different structure. You have to have your comms, warranty, and support so dialed for 100x the amount of interactions compared to a dealer network. Plus increasingly complicated product.
  • 2 0
 @GTscoob: Seems like an opportunity for a cycling-specific 3PL model.
  • 2 0
 Bring Willy back Smile
  • 2 0
 Bring Jimmy back and pay him for his time away... xoxoxo
  • 1 1
 I WISH YOU ALL THE BEST and start over and go directly to consumer with lower prices.
  • 1 0
 I can't think of a better advertisement.
  • 1 1
 Gonna quote professor Ladies Love Cool J:

DON’T CALL IT A COMEBACK. THEY’VE BEEN HERE FOR YEARS!
  • 3 5
 So what was the point of the sale in the first place? Suddenly didn't want to manage the company they started? The commitment "to keeping the distinctly Kona flavored bike buzz flowing" faded, then miraculously came back?
  • 4 0
 I wonder if they were approached with an offer that was too good to pass up. Lots of equity companies were trolling for a bike brand during the giant sales boom during Covid. Probably took their payday and thought they were done. Then the bottom fell out and they were probably able to buy it back for penny’s on the dollar.
  • 4 1
 @islandforlife: Which goes against stuff like this:

"Our Pacific Northwest roots are as strong as ever. Offices in Ferndale, WA and North Vancouver, BC continue to anchor us proudly in place. Tenacious, resilient, straight talking, gritty and sometimes covered in grease, we are committed to keeping the distinctly Kona flavored bike buzz flowing, and helping people find freedom and fun."

Those roots didn't matter in the face of a short-term payout? Where was the tenacity and commitment when they sold? Seems to be a lack of straight talking, and instead lots of back tracking.

"Too good to pass up"? So short-term returns (and you have to remember they had no way of knowing they would be able to get it back) overrides "keeping the distinctly Kona flavored bike buzz flowing, and helping people find freedom and fun." How much will it take for another "too good to pass up" offer to get them to bail on the brand again?
  • 2 0
 @justinfoil: I agree with you regarding the inconsistencies of their press release, although i think that is probably just a symptom of the overall intrinsic dishonesty or, at the very least, "spin", which is used to cast anything in a more favorable light by marketing departments.

Regarding them selling the company, does anyone know how old these Kona founders are? If they've owned it since the early 1990s, it seems like they must be in their 60s, which is an age when many people are thinking about retirement. To me, that is different than someone in their 30s selling their company, which as you point out, gives the appearance of trying to make a quick buck. Maybe, after a couple years of retirement, they've gotten bored, and want something to do something again, which is quite common for retirees. That just could have happened to coincide with Kona ending up for sale again.
  • 3 0
 @justinfoil: that’s not what I was saying. I think they were cruising along during Covid and were offered a great deal. Kona had been slowly sliding downhill, don’t think it had the resources to invest in a lot of R&D and redesigns. They’re older and were probably like “what should we do with this thing?” And either started shopping it around or were just approached at the right time and were like “Sweet!” They could retire and let another company with more resources stop the slide and invest in new R&D and models. They were probably just riding off into the sunset with no thought what so ever that they would turn around and buy it back.

But then the bottom falls out after Covid (many didn’t see it coming), it’s back up for sale and they now realize that they could get it back for far far less than they sold it for, and have a bunch of extra cash to reinvest and probably do a lot of the things they couldn’t before.

Just guessing here, but seems reasonable. I also definitely don’t take a press release written by a PR company at face value.
  • 1 0
 See you at this years Malverns Classic, 22-25th of August!
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 Good to see this. Update the Hei Hei.
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 The new Coiler is coming - can you feel it?
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 MKGA
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 Love this!
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 OH HELL YES!!!! Bringing back the AnokanoK!!!
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 Don't forget gravel and adventure bikes... ;-)
  • 2 0
 How much?
  • 2 0
 Awesome!!
  • 2 0
 Good news!
  • 2 0
 Hell yea KONA!
  • 1 0
 Updated Stab Supreme Chainstays , floating brake All in Kona Clump
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 Who-Faluting-Ray!! This has made my bike-day...Welcome Back, gents!
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 Could use gurrila gravity carbon fiber stuff to make the frames in America
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 Best bloody bikes. Can’t wait. Next bike will be another Kona to accompany my Honzo DL
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 GET IN!!!!!!!
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 Excellent!
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 Say What Ta Nay Hew
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 Whoaaaa
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 Sounds good!
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 YYYEEESSS!!!
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 Great news for sure!!
  • 1 0
 great news
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 Merica!!!
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 Kona was founded in Vancouver Canada in 1988 by two Canadians.
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