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Specialized celebrates opening of four new 'Innovation Centers'

Published September 8, 2017
Specialized's new Swiss building is a former paper mill.

MORGAN HILL, Calif. (BRAIN) — This year Specialized will open four new facilities, in three countries, each devoted to innovation, the company said.

The new facilities include an e-bike innovation center that opened in Switzerland in August, a new headquarters for its Retül division in Colorado, a new testing and development center in Taichung, Taiwan, and finally a new R&D lab at the company’s homebase in California, which will open in November.

“We have always focused on innovation, and we live by the phrase 'innovate or die,'" company founder Mike Sinyard said in a dealer letter. “We have significantly increased our investments with our people and four new world-class innovation centers.”

The facility in Cham, Switzerland, is focused on Turbo development, advanced engineering, and connected technologies. The facility is in a restored former paper mill and will keep the brand close to technology and engineering resources as well as enthusiastic e-bike riders.

The Retül headquarters in Boulder will replace a smaller facility there. The first company space in Boulder, before Specialized acquired the company, was a garage that the founders called the TSL (Top Secret Lab). The new facility is off Boulder’s Airport Road, near the Valmont Bike Park and several other industry brands.

“This office will help the team extend our innovation credentials beyond product into services through Retül and Body Geometry, as well as hardware and software development,” Sinyard said.

Specialized's new Taichung building.

Specialized first opened an office in Taiwan in an employee's apartment about 15 years ago. In September the company will move into a new purpose-built facility that Sinyard said will “accelerate our advanced product innovation with new labs and development resources.” The Taichung facility also will have resources to support Specialized's business partners in Asia.

Sinyard said the new R&D lab in Morgan Hill will expand in-house capabilities in technology, materials, construction, assembly, testing, and other areas.

The company said all four centers were planned and developed consistent with high standards of environmental responsibility. Each facility was constructed to a minimum LEED Silver certification standard. All construction has been carried out by local area contractors, reducing transportation waste while contributing to the local economy and community.

Every new facility location was selected to be near public transportation and with easy access to bike parks, trails, and other riding areas. Each office has an onsite gym, as well as locker rooms and showers and workspaces were designed to have ample natural light and collaborative meeting areas.

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