You are here

Kuat's Luke Kuschmeader: 'If we can maintain 20% of this new interest we'll be doing great.'

Published October 21, 2020
Part 10 of BRAIN's Crystal Ball series.

Editor's note: For a feature in Bicycle Retailer & Industry News, Retail Editor Ray Keener spoke with 14 leaders on the supplier side of the industry. Ray spoke with leaders of major bike brands, component suppliers, e-bike startups, accessory makers and more. We will be running sections of that article online this month.

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — It’s been a hectic and unprecedented several months for our industry and many others. Fortunately for our companies and retailers, hectic has meant managing demand rather than fighting for survival.

Now that the season is waning, inventories are catching up (in some cases) and suppliers are catching their collective breaths, we reached out to a cross-section of suppliers and service providers to get their take on the future.

Luke Kuschmeader, President, Kuat Racks

We see the boom continuing, the question is at what level and at what point will the demand flatten. We sure haven't seen it yet despite the fact that we usually slow down this time of year.

Comparing 2020 to last year, if we had the inventory we needed, sales would be way higher. Like many others, sales were down in March and April, then demand picked up. It's been challenging to catch up and we're looking to finish the year with double-digit growth. If we as an industry can maintain 20% of this new interest we'll be doing great.

We're currently six to eight weeks back-ordered on every core SKU we have. Our primary factories in China and Taiwan have been really good. It's been tough for them having to double capacity and output.

We've started rolling out our pre-season program to retailers and the response has been very good. Dealers clearly understand the situation so they're willing to commit because they know they need to.

As far as our product mix, we're going to adapt to the demand as we see that shifting. Our mid-tier products have seen the most growth, such as our NV 2.0 flagship product at $598 retail.

Luke Kuschmeader.
Topics associated with this article: Crystal Ball

Join the Conversation