SAN DIEGO, CA (BRAIN)—Fallbrook Technologies will not only continue licensing its award-winning NuVinci continuously variable transmission (CVT) technology, but now will also manufacture its NuVinci hubs for the bicycle and light electric vehicle markets.
To create and manage the expansion into manufacturing, Fallbrook has hired Donald W. Sparkman as vice president of operations. Sparkman is a 30-year veteran of Ford Motor Company whose most recent position was executive director of North American Sales Planning and Distribution. Alan M. Nordin, Fallbrook’s vice president of sales and business development, will be responsible for OEM, distributor, and customer relationships.
In addition, Fallbrook will manage the associated distribution and customer support.
This new capability will replace the manufacturing now being done by Aftermarket Technology Corp—Fallbrook’s current licensed manufacturer. ATC has agreed to sell the business assets associated with its NuVinci-related manufacturing to Fallbrook, subject to financing.
The critical success and market adoption of NuVinci technology has increased demand for the technology across a broad range of applications and industries. This demand created the need for expanded manufacturing capacity.
After evaluating a number of options, Fallbrook decided to develop its own manufacturing capability. ATC has, in turn, elected to focus its resources and activities on other parts of its business.
Fallbrook is securing additional financing both for the asset purchase and the expansion of its manufacturing and distribution efforts, and currently is establishing subcontracts to address various aspects of the manufacturing.
“ATC has been instrumental in taking NuVinci technology to market, and they’ve done an excellent job—both of building drivetrains and building customer relationships,” said William G. Klehm III, president and chief executive officer of Fallbrook. “With ATC’s decision to focus on their other business lines moving forward, it’s the right time to make this change.”
Transition of the manufacturing has already begun. ATC will fulfill current customer orders and is working with Fallbrook to execute a smooth transition for customer support and future orders.
“Taking NuVinci technology from the drawing board to the showroom was an exciting challenge,” said Don Johnson, president and chief executive officer of ATC. “We’re proud to have been the first to bring this innovative technology to customers worldwide.”
In 2007, its first full year on the market, NuVinci technology won several major awards, including the prestigious R&D 100 Award as one of the year’s most technologically significant products. It also won the Netherlands’ Technology of the Year Award. Bicycles equipped with NuVinci drivetrains won the Popular Science Best of What’s New award and Bike of the Year in The Netherlands.