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Huffy launches IBD-only bike line, Batch Bicycles

Published April 12, 2018
Maier (left) with Smith.

DAYTON, Ohio (BRAIN) — Huffy Bicycles has announced a new line of bikes to be sold exclusively through IBDs: Batch Bicycles.

"I asked my team to find the white space," said Huffy CEO Bill Smith. "Dealers told me there are opportunities for incremental business, in between the high end of mass-market bikes and the low end of specialty bikes. Huffy is in a unique position to leverage its strengths and provide that. 

"We're a well-run company with 126 years of bicycle experience and significant buying power. We don't carry overhead of mainstream IBD brands, such as the costs of a large sales force, catalogs, race team sponsorships and floor financing. We're able to make a well-spec'd product, and offer dealers great margins, without the need for minimum buys, presale commitments, inventory requirements or complicated discount structures," he added.

Smith began a dialogue with IBDs after attending 2017's IBD Summit and Bicycle Leadership Conference. In a panel discussion at the IBD Summit, Smith said Huffy faced many of the same challenges as the IBD industry. He also began recruiting IBDs to act as Huffy warranty service centers. Huffy launched a new Service Center program in 2018.  

Batch Bicycles is being run by industry veteran Bruno Maier, who rejoined Huffy and parent company United Wheels last year. The brand will launch five categories of bicycles at Interbike in September: a comfort bike, a commuter model, a beach cruiser, a mountain bike and kids' bikes, all made with aluminum frames and spec'd with Shimano drivetrains and double-walled aluminum rims.

The company told BRAIN it will announce the bikes' pricing at a later date.

"Batch Bicycles will be differentiated by product quality and by price," Maier said. "They are crafted with purpose, and we will streamline the cataloging, ordering and delivery process via a mobile app that allows dealers to order a single bike at a time, and have it shipped to their shop within two to three days."

Maier, the managing director of new business for United Wheels, also was involved that company's purchase of Niner Bicycles earlier this year. While Huffy and Niner are both owned by Hong Kong-based United Wheels, the two U.S. brands are operated separately. 

For Batch Bicycles dealer inquiries, please email info@batchbicycles.com.

 

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