Fergus Ewing MSP, Scotland’s Minister for Business, Enterprise and Tourism today visited the Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland near Peebles. He was told that the centre is supporting a multi-million pound economic boom as businesses create new and innovative products for the increasing number of MTBers riding in Scotland. The business incubation centre is based at the Glentress MTB centre.
The Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland opened in the summer of 2014 and is run as a partnership with Edinburgh Napier University, the Scottish Funding Council, Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Cycling.
The centre has become a focal point for product testing and MTB-related training and research.
Now a new survey of the companies which have worked with the centre has reinforced an earlier study highlighting the value of mountain biking to Scotland’s economy.
The survey of 28 companies, ranging from textiles firms and bicycle manufacturers to security devices firms and makers of specialist equipment, forecast a combined increase in turnover of £13.5m over the next three years.
This growth will create nearly 70 new jobs and see a £7.4m increase in international sales over the same period.
Dr Florida-James, a Reader in Sport & Exercise Sciences at Edinburgh Napier University, said: “The opportunities for knowledge transfer between business and academia in the mountain bike industry are huge.”
Ewing told assembled business leaders: “Scotland is blessed with some of the best mountain biking facilities in the world and the Scottish Government is committed to maintaining this international reputation. Mountain biking is not only an excellent way to stay fit and healthy but it is an exciting growth industry, as these new figures show.
In 2013, a study by University of Highlands & Islands estimated that visiting mountain bikers spent £49m in the country, with indirect spending amounting to £130m.