US rack manufacturer seeks UK distributor - BikeBiz

US rack manufacturer seeks UK distributor

Old Man Mountain Products of Santa Barbara, California, is a four-person rack-welding operation that now has distributors in Canada, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherland and Australia. It produces racks that fit MTBs with front and rear suspension, and frames without rack eyelets.
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OMM is looking to start UK distribution by this Spring. All of OMMP's eight racks are manufactured, by hand, in the US.

Distribution is dealer direct in the US:

"This enables us to keep the service at a high level. Fitting racks to bikes is frequently an inexact science and the OMM shop is able to really take care of dealers and help solve their fitting issues," said Jonathan Maus, OMM's PR man, and a former company employee.

Maus believes the UK could sustain 75-100 IBD stockists of OMM racks.

All OMM racks attach at the brake bosses with a proprietary bracket. The no-eyelet models also attach at the axle via an extra-long QR skewer.

The racks range in price pfrom $55-$125 at retail, $28-$66 at trade. The prices include all fixing hardware. The US dealer terms are any order of four or less units must be prepaid and four or more qualifies for terms.

OMM was established in 1996, attending that year's Interbike show after being in business for only two weeks.

The founder, and still one of the welders, is Channing Hammond. The OMM welding unit is sited next to Hammond Snr's metal fabrication business. A

Channing Hammond designed and welding the chassis of his family's world -record holding Bonneville Salt Flats race car, which has been driven by his mother at over 300mph. His grandfather help design and engineer Charles Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis record-breaking aeroplane.

Maus said OMM was looking for a "smaller distributor" that is "really into the message of bike camping and adventure riding. We prefer more of a grassroots marketing approach.

"The UK has a great culture of hardcore and adventurous mountain bikers that would be receptive to the OMM products and brand."

In the US, however, there's less of a cycle touring tradition. Maus is trying to stimulate interest in 'bike camping':

"I am trying to re-package the old attitudes and ideas that go with cycle touring. Those ideas, at least here in the States, include fifty-somethings with reflective jackets and third-eye mirrors grinding down the highway. The vast majority of your core MTB enthusiasts don't know what a pannier is, and frankly think touring is 'uncool'. In order to introduce these types of riders to the idea of multi-day, self-supported riding, the industry has to make it seem cool. Bike camping does just that."

jm@boxandonepr.com

http://www.oldmanmountain.com

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