BOULDER, CO (BRAIN) — August sales at independent bicycle dealers were up 6 percent over the same month last year, marking the biggest August in at least four years, according to preliminary data from the Bicycle Product Suppliers Association Topline RetailTRAK from Leisure Trends Group.
LTG is forecasting a 7 to 8 percent increase in annual sales over last year, which would create a record year overall.
The group estimates August sales through IBDs totaled $356 million. All major categories shared in the dollar gains, and unit sales were up 4 percent.
Back-to-school items drove August sales. Mountain and transit/fitness bikes were each up 12 percent in dollars to $51 million and $36 million, respectively.
"These are the 'go-to' bike categories for back-to-school," said Leisure Trends retail analyst JJ Rudman. Lighting, another back-to-school category, jumped 10 percent.
"Interestingly, locks, a back-to-school 'must have,' gained only 1 percent, but that was influenced by low inventory as quantity on hand was down 30 percent compared to last year," he said.
"With the summer season ending on a high note, combined with general retailer optimism, we expect 2012 to be a banner year for the cycling industry."
LTG will be presenting the 2012 Cycling Industry Update, an NBDA Super Seminar at Interbike, on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. in the Sands Convention Center, Casanova 501.