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Focus USA hires e-bike manager for Kalkhoff, Focus brands

Published September 26, 2014
Iris Bruschinski

CARLSBAD, Calif. (BRAIN) — With the appointment of a dedicated North America e-bike manager, Focus Bicycles USA plans to make Kalkhoff and Focus e-bikes more available in the United States.

"We see a growing demand for e-bikes, especially in the high-end market, which is insufficiently serviced at the moment," said Iris Bruschinski, who started Monday in her new position.

Bruschinski cited the growth of e-bike sales to commuters, especially in bigger cities.

Kalkhoff and Focus e-bikes are market leaders in Germany, but while a few U.S. retailers rave about the quality of the German-made bikes, they've been difficult to get here.

Starting in January, however, Focus USA expects to expand its U.S. distribution as it begins delivering 2015 model bikes.

Bruschinski said Focus is looking for IBDs to carry its e-bikes because it believes they are best suited to sell technical products. "But at the same time we are an exclusive brand," she added. "We would like to have the right retailers at the right place, and we won't just open up hundreds of stores everywhere."

Focus uses its own Impulse e-bike motor system on its bikes. Several Kalkhoff models have ranked highly in European e-bike tests, including those conducted by ExtraEnergy.

The brands Focus and Kalkhoff are owned by Germany's Derby Cycle, which itself was acquired by Pon Holdings in 2011. Pon, one of the largest family-run companies in the Netherlands, is best known as a big Dutch automotive retailer. Among several other divisions is its bicycle business, which also owns Gazelle, Cervélo and other bike brands.

Bruschinski formerly worked in business development for Pon's automotive division in the Netherlands. Interested retailers can email her at i.bruschinski@focus-bikes.com, which should be active in a few days.

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