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E-bike executives meeting Thursday to review strategies to boost future of e-bike market

Published December 8, 2016

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. (BRAIN) — More than 60 industry executives — many representing the emerging e-bike industry in the U.S. market — are gathering Thursday to review gains made in 2016 and to plot legislative strategy for 2017.

PeopleForBikes and the Bicycle Product Suppliers Association are sponsoring what they call the 2016 E-Bike Summit. Interbike is hosting the all-day event in a conference room adjacent to Interbike's offices in San Juan Capistrano. A similar conference was held in 2015.

Among the items on the agenda is a review of initiatives taken this year to improve access and laws affecting e-bike use on pavement. And representatives from the University of Tennessee and Portland State University will discuss ongoing e-bike research as well as outline the future for further study of the market.

SRAM's Randy Neufeld will discuss how bikeways can help grow e-bike sales. He will outline where he thinks the U.S. and Europe are heading with the future of e-bikes and how companies can better engage in the market.

E-mountain bikes (eMTBs) are also on the agenda, an area that is of growing importance among U.S. suppliers. Looking forward to 2017, the group lists 12 objectives for the industry to support.

Among them are developing and improving relationships with land management agencies; hosting training seminars for land managers; engaging in more public hearings that could affect eMTB usage; and documenting case studies and best practices for land managers.

Money is also on the agenda. The industry had pledged to raise $300,000 this year to further its efforts to promote the e-bike market. To date it has raised $289,500 in commitments. If the industry hits its $300,000 goal by year's end, the BPSA has agreed to contribute an additional $100,000.

The roster of attendees includes a who's who of the U.S. e-bike industry. Among them are Larry Pizzi, chairman of the BPSA's e-bike committee and a senior vice president at Accell North America; Don DiCostanzo, founder of Pedego, which now has more than 90 stores in the U.S.; Bosch's Claudia Wasko; Shimano's Jason Sheehan; and Yamaha's Nao Igo.

Most key brands — Trek, Specialized, Giant, Felt, Focus, BionX, Stromer, Pivot, Haibike, BH and others — have representatives at the meeting. PeopleForBikes' Morgan Lommele and Pizzi will kick off the conference with an opening presentation.

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