Hayes Performance Systems
owns Hayes Disc Brake, Manitou, SUNringlé, ProTaper (the mountain bike part), and Wheelsmith, so the addition of one of the world's top carbon wheel makers should be a good fit. The announcement comes on the tail of a very active development period for Reynolds, which includes being one of the first wheelmakers to be signed off by Shimano to make Micro-spline freehub systems. The Salt Lake City-based carbon manufacturer will be launching three additional designs this month. Couple that with the recent launch of Hayes' excellent Dominion disc brakes and insider talk of a similar renaissance emerging from Manitou's suspension team and it all starts to make sense.
No information was released about the purchase price, or if the consortium plans to maintain Reynolds' current factory location. The latter seems like a no-brainer, however, as their Utah manufacturing and research facility is centered in one of the nation's busiest and most cost effective high-tech marketplaces. With high-end manufacturing at home and a dedicated manufacturing facility in China, Reynolds Cycling is an asset for the Hayes Group's ambition to recharge its image and take a larger share of the OEM market.
In a perfect world, Hayes could take advantage of the resurgence of aluminum wheels by positioning SUNringlé there, while using the Reynolds brand as
a spear point with which to establish a place for the group among elite-level bike makers. Pivot Cycles is one of Reynolds' current OEM customers. That said, it would be easy to pass off such an acquisition as business-as-usual for a bike industry that always conglomerates when the market is stable and growth is slow. That is definitely the present situation, but in this case, Reynolds fills a void that has been missing from the Hayes portfolio for too long.