Friday, February 22, 2013

LeMond plans re-entry to bike market

DENVER, CO (BRAIN) — Tour de France hero Greg LeMond said he expects to begin selling bicycles again, possibly showing prototype models as early as this year's Interbike.
Greg LeMond
"I've got quite a few different ideas," LeMond said in a Skype interview with BRAIN this week. "Ultimately I'm looking at coming back into the bicycle business, integrating some technology and stuff that I have used in my cycling career."
LeMond, who was still wearing a back brace as he recovers from a car accident earlier this month, said he had decided to avoid a licensing agreement like he had with Trek Bicycle, and instead look for a "partnership" with a manufacturer, with a goal of eventually bringing manufacturing in house.
"I want to build a company that can be around for more than a few years; I'm still young," he said.
LeMond sold Seattle-based LeMond Fitness, which sold stationary bikes and trainers, to Hoist Fitness last fall. Then he and investors set up a new company, LeMond Inc., that bought back the trainer business from Hoist. Hoist is focused on selling LeMond stationary bikes into the health club market.
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The new company, based in Minneapolis, is selling the trainers and will expand from there. Among its employees is sales director Gene DiMenna, who is a former regional sales manager at Trek, involved with the sales of LeMond bikes when Trek still sold the line.
Trek began licensing the LeMond name for bikes after LeMond's retirement from racing in 1994. The relationship ended badly with a suit and countersuit that were finally resolved in 2008. Since then LeMond said he has received several licensing offers from bike manufacturers and had considered re-entering the bike market with a consumer direct sales option, but has since swung around toward selling through bike shops.
"There was a period when I needed to digest the whole end of the relationship with Trek and decide where I wanted to go and whether I wanted to get back into the bike business," he said.

LeMond plans re-entry to bike market | Bicycle Retailer and Industry News

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