2008 review - part three: July to September

BikeBiz looks at the stories that made the front pages and got the trade talking in 2008...
Publish date:

JULY - The month brought news that London’s cycle retailers
were urging Transport for London to spend cash on repairing existing cycle networks, rather than splashing cash on new structures.

Elsewhere, rising bike use in the US had boosted urban-commuter bikes, according to research from Nielsen. But there was yet more glum news for retailers as a survey from GFK told us that UK consumer confidence had hit an all-time low.

July also saw the theft of David Cameron’s bike, pinched while he shopped for salad. He described the bike as an ‘old friend’ and luckily for the Tory politician, a PR-savvy Dutch tourist board waded in and offered the Tory leader a replacement.

Elsewhere, BikeBiz hailed the news that honours had been
granted to two of the industry’s best-known characters –Robert
Chicken Snr and John Grimshaw.

AUGUST - The Olympics grabbed the headlines in August, with
cycling heroes Chris Hoy, Nicole Cooke, Bradley Wiggins and Victoria Pendleton boosting cycling’s profile and popularity in the UK. Retail certainly saw a knock-on effect, with Evans taking £100,000 in one store during ‘victory week’. Eyes also turned to Britain’s own Olympics in 2012, with the MTB venue confirmed to be at Hadleigh Farm, Essex.

August saw high-profile resignations in the biking industry, including Halford chairman Richard Pym – leaving to join Bradford & Bingley, while Cannondale CEO Jeff Frehner also moved on.

Meanwhile, Gordon Brown insisted his hands were tied on
the matter of scrapping import duty of bicycles, despite a huge
online petition.

The BikeBizAwards Finalists were also announced in August,
ahead of the October Awards.

SEPTEMBER - The afterglow of cycling’s Olympic successes
continued into September, with Tesco reporting a 130 per cent rise in bicycle sales.

JD Sports also had something to celebrate this month, reporting a pre-tax profit rise of 71 per cent. The month saw the first shipment of Powabyke’s X-byke sell out before it arrived, and Canada’s Ryder eyewear range came to the UK.

TfL and LCC set up the cycling centre in West London and ETRA was forced to cancel Mobility Week. The event had been intended as a key opportunity to target MEPs with the E-bike and PTWs as a solution to congestion in European cities.

Rumour became reality in September too, with
confirmation that Lance Armstrong was to come out of retirement and hit 2009’s Tour De France.

Click here for the first part of the 2008 review, covering January to March.

Click here for the second part of the 2008 review, covering April to June.

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