MONTREAL (BRAIN)—Dorel Industries’ CEO Martin Schwartz spoke briefly to the company’s shareholders Thursday morning reiterating the success Dorel has seen in its bike division in recent months.
Both the IBD and mass merchant channels were up 20 percent in the fourth quarter of last year, and revenue from the IBD business increased 25 percent in the first quarter of this year. Dorel’s bike business grew faster than the industry as a whole and is gaining market share, Schwartz said during a half-hour presentation at the Omni Hotel in Montreal.
Dorel has upped its marketing spend to support its bike brands including a major commitment to become to the co-sponsor of the Liquigas-Cannondale pro tour team. The company continues to put money behind the Schwinn brand with a television advertising campaign, and recently gave away more than 1,000 Schwinn bikes on nationally televised talk shows “The Oprah Winfrey Show”, “The Elle DeGeneres Show,” and “The Today Show.” The new Schwinn Vestige will also appear in an upcoming O magazine piece.
Dorel has complemented Schwinn bikes with a full line of parts and accessories, which was up considerably in the first quarter of the year due to increased placement in major mass markets. Cannondale has also renewed its emphasis on P & A and is seeing new growth opportunities in that high margin category, Schwartz said.
Schwartz said he expects the solid start to 2011 to continue in the bike division.
“Dorel has invested heavily in its bicycle brands and with the enthusiastic acceptance of new models we’re seeing continued growth in the IBD dealer network. We’re optimistic for the balance of the year in the mass merchant channel as point of sale activity has improved nicely in recent weeks,” he said.
Dorel owns Cannondale, GT, Mongoose, Schwinn, Sugoi, Iron Horse and PTI.