Hero Cycles of India, one of the world’s largest bicycle makers, has acquired a majority interest in Steven Walsh's Avocet Sports of Manchester. This is Hero's first acquisition outside of India. Avocet owns the Coyote and Viking bike brands. Industry veteran Walsh is Avocet's chairman.
After the signing ceremony in Ludhiana, India, Walsh addressed a meeting of over 200 components makers from all over India and spoke of the necessity to support Hero in its expansion into the European markets by ensuring that all components are produced to higher standards than the EN minimums.
“We are delighted to be working with Hero to develop its world-class products for Europe," said Walsh.
"The new relationship is very much about being a two-way exchange of ideas. Avocet’s existing suppliers will continue to have the company’s full support as it seeks to rapidly expand the Avocet brand portfolio across all European markets.”
Walsh remains as chairman of Avocet.
Pankaj Munjal, chairman and MD of Hero Cycles, said: “This acquisition marks our entry into the European market and plays an important role in realising our ambition of serving European customers. We are confident that the companies will integrate seamlessly without losing their individual identities.”
Incorporated in 1956, Hero Cycles has a manufacturing capacity of 7.5 million bicycles per year, with factories in Punjab, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. OP Munjal, chairman emeritus of Hero Cycles, died yesterday after a suspected heart attack. He was one of the founders of the Hero Group. He was the father of Pankaj Munjal.