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Retailers' crystal ball: We ask IBDs their projections for 2021

Published January 6, 2021
Today: Evan Robinson of Steady State Cycles in Pittsburgh.

BOULDER, Colo. (BRAIN) — As this unforgettable year comes to end, retailers are eager for a little off-season rest, but anxious about the prospects for 2021. Will they have enough supply? Enough workers? Will a soft economy or COVID-19 lockdowns curb demand, or has everyone who ever wanted a bike already got one? 

For a feature in our December magazine, we touched base with 16 retailers to get their take on the 2020 season and their predictions for 2021. We'll be sharing snapshots from those interviews online over the next two weeks.

Evan Robinson, Steady State Cycles, Pittsburgh, Pa.

We increased our numbers in 2020 across all categories. Our margins have been a bit lower as we've paid more for shipping than we ever have previously.

I think we are seeing an artificial inflation of demand. The scarcity mentality will eventually cause a glut of inventory. Forecasting seems to be pushing distributors to order more than ever before. I think it will take at least two years for the bike industry to return to business as usual. Maybe it never will.

I think the winter months will be a great time to regroup and recharge. Holiday supply (AKA kids’ bikes) has been non-existent. Moderately priced gifts for cyclists have currently been in good stock.

Our largest bike brand did not offer us typical credit terms this year and they are already sold out of most of their models. It is an incredible strain. It has affected our purchasing decisions for sure.

Staffing is completely flummoxing at this point. Something needs to change based on the volume of repairs, but none of it seems sustainable. We need to find a way to better serve our base while not turning away business.



Evan Robinson, Steady State Cycles, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Topics associated with this article: Crystal Ball

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