WOODINVILLE, WA (BRAIN) — FSA has a new boss in the U.S. market. Lance Bohlen, 56, has officially taken over as the company’s managing director, replacing Matt VanEnkevort, who left in June to become CEO at Marin Bicycles.
“I am excited about the opportunity,” said Bohlen, formerly with SR Suntour. FSA, owned by Tien Hsin Industries in Taiwan, is a major supplier of OE and aftermarket parts including Gravity, Vision and its urban drivetrain brand, Metropolis.
Bohlen, who began racing at 11 and got his first industry job at Son’s Bike Shop in Philadelphia at 16, said Tien Hsin’s U.S. affiliate will continue to focus on sales to distributors and small OE customers. “We have our own engineering and marketing group here as well,” he added. The Washington office and warehouse also handles warranty and South American sales, and staff there recently began assembling Vision wheelsets in-house.
One area that may get more focus is FSA’s Metropolis group. “It’s been sort of the red-headed stepchild,” he said. The drivetrain is an internal two-speed planetary-geared crankset. It does away with front derailleurs and can be spec’d with either internal gear hubs or cassettes. Currently, Raleigh and several other companies have spec’d the system in limited quantities.
Bohlen’s career began at Rocky Mountain, where he was the Canadian company’s first product manager. He also built frames while there. He later went to France to work for Decathlon, a major French sporting goods chain, where he spec’d forks and frames.
He then joined Specialized in 1995 and was the product manager for Specialized’s first attempt at a European-style commuter bike. The frame and most parts were made exclusively in Italy, he recalled. When Specialized pulled the plug on the Globe (since reintroduced by the company), they offered Bohlen a product manager’s job in Morgan Hill, and while there he lined up Specialized’s first foray into the pro peloton with Festina.
Bohlen subsequently joined Pacific Cycles to work on its Schwinn and Mongoose dealer programs and later relaunched KORE components with headquarters in Seattle. Bohlen no longer has financial ties to the company, he said.