VISTA, CA (BRAIN)—In an effort to better align inventory levels with dealers’ selling seasons, Haro, Masi and Premium Bicycles have eliminated their traditional singular line launch and have shifted to a perpetual product development philosophy.
“Dealers should be able to buy what they want, when they need it,” said Joe Hawk, Haro’s chief operating officer. “Most new product isn’t available until well after Interbike. By that time, most dealers are winding their selling season down. Sure, there will be a spike around the holidays, but most are reducing inventory levels in preparation for their slow season. And when most dealers are ready to stock up for spring, suppliers are winding down their production and inventory levels in order to ramp up for the arrival of new models and to reduce the possibility of ‘carryovers’ in need of discounting. Oftentimes, the depletion of the ‘old stock’ occurs faster than expected, and the lead times of ‘new stock’ greater than expected, creating gaps in inventory during key dealer selling seasons, something no one wants.”
In the past, Haro has followed the more traditional approach that supports a late summer line launch. Under this new perpetual model, development and product introduction schedules will be supported by a fall/winter, and spring/summer catalog, along with individual product sheets for models introduced in between.
“This changes the older, more traditional thinking that the consumer is as focused on model years in the bike business as they seem to be in the automotive business,” Hawk said. “With entry-level products that aren’t heavily technology driven, consumers are less focused on model year and more focused on value and immediate gratification.”