Big bike brands getting bigger...

...small ones getting smaller. Well, at least in comparison, says the Plimsoll Report, a company analysis and benchmarking service. (Read on, too, for company turnovers and the biggest bike shop in the UK).
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The major players in the cycles industry are like the winner of a monopoly game, grabbing 90 percent of the market, says Jennifer Ovington, the PR officer at Plimsoll.

Shes basing her claim on the first ever listing of the Top 75 companies by sales in the Plimsoll Portfolio Analysis: Cycles, 1st Edition 2000.

This elite band is competing for pieces of the industry. For the other

companies, staying in the game is going to prove difficult. Only 5 companies have kept their same sales ranking from last year, 40 have moved up and 20 have fallen down. If, like the game, there are only so many properties or companies, a strategy is vital to keep your place at the table.

Like monopoly does this mean the number of major players will gradually

reduce to only one winner? I do see further consolidation of the major

players, if only because 17 of the players are currently loss making, and

remarkably, 38 are showing signs of future troubles ahead.

However, as BikeBiz has pointed out to Plimsoll before, not all of the companies in their reports are involved in the cycle trade. We have been responsible for Plimsoll removing 12 companies in the past but theres still the odd blip. For instance, pop pickers, in at number four in the top 75 is HHS Trading Ltd. Who they? Exactly.

BikeBiz rang HHS Trading Ltd and they confirmed they have nothing to do with the cycle trade. We told Jennifer Ovington of Plimsoll this and she thanked us for updating her:

We rely on information supplied by Companies House and when limited companies say they are involved with cycles, we have to take them at their word.

UNLUCKY FOR SOME...

The top 13 companies, according to Plimsoll, are:

a = Previous sales (1997)

b = Previous ranking

c = Latest sales (1998)

d = Latest ranking


1. Raleigh

a = 68 916 000

b = 1

c = 51 915 000

d = 1

2. Tandem Group

a = 39 171 000

b = 2

c = 31 256 000

d = 2

3. Moore Large

a = 27 262 000

b = 3

c = 25 901 000

d = 3

4. HHS Trading UK!

5. Universal

a = 17 482 000

b = 5

c = 19 125 000

d = 5

6. Sturmey Archer

a = 18 304 000

b = 7

c = 17 802 000

d = 6

7. Schwinn/GT UK Sales Ltd.

a = 19 282 000

b = 5

c = 16 733 000

d = 7

8. Concept Cycling

a = 13 131 000

b = 9

c = 15 374 000

d = 8

9. E. Reece

a = 18 456 000

b = 6

c = 14 318 000

d = 9

10. Trek

a = 9 578 000

b = 10

c = 9 809 000

d = 10

11. Saracen

a = 8 539 000

b = 12

c = 9 056 000

d = 11

12. ATB Sales

a = 9 005 000

b = 11

c = 8 910 000

d = 12

13. Giant UK

a = 7 103 000

b = 13

c = 7 800 000

d = 13

Bizarrely, there are companies missing: Halfords, Madison and Specialized to name but three. Halfords and H Young appear in the main Plimsoll Portfolio Analysis report, a 540 page tome we use to check accounts details on companies, but not in the Top 75 list which is meant to be extracted from the main report.

The Top 75 doesnt just list bike suppliers, bike shops are in there too. But is the Factory Cycle Shop of Lincoln (t/o £3.2m) really the biggest bike shop in the UK? Geoffrey Butler (t/o £1.8m) is bound to be near the top of any list of big UK bike shops but Evans isnt on the list and nor are many of the usual suspects. A few may still be sole traders so dont have to file company accounts but the rest are missing from the Plimsoll Top 75.

PS

The less said about the drop in turnovers year on year the better, although the figures do relate from 1997/8 which werent exactly very good years. Most of the brands above have increased their turnovers in 1999.

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