Future Publishing CEO Stevie Spring has predicted that the bike industry will be protected from economic turbulence in 2009 – as it continues to attract record numbers of people to the sport.
Spring said that, in the eyes of consumer, cycling was "with the zeitgeist", following the surge in popularity the Tour De France and Olympic Games had given the sport in 2008.
She told BikeBiz: "In biking, the highlight for Future was launching [online cycling portal] BikeRadar.com. It’s really taken off this year – we’ve had a great year for bikes. We were really helped by the Tour De France and The Olympics, as well as the cycling programmes on TV. Everybody has being encouraged to take up cycling. We’re with the zeitgeist."
Spring also explained why Future's cycling portfolio had seen such a successful year – including BikeRadar attracting three million unique users each month.
She added: “We’re number one in the UK for cycling content. I love this stat: There are 245 countries in the world. And in July this year, we had 210 of them visit our Cycling News website.
"The reason for that success [despite economic slowdown] is very simple: It’s the difference between ‘want to have’ and ‘need to have’.
"If you describe yourself as a cyclist, it’s part and parcel of who you are and what you are. You’re almost a professional consumer in that regard – which is why we call our readership ‘prosumers’. Your monthly magazine is going to be way down the list of things you stop spending money on. That’s why we’re proving more resilient than the overall market.”