Did the BMX kill Raleighs Nottingham factory ?

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by The Technical M, Apr 27, 2003.

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  1. A bike shop owner informed me that one of the reasons why Raleigh closed down its factory in
    Nottingham is because of a severe decline in the sale of mountain bikes with 24 inch wheels which
    was Raleighs primary money maker during the early and mid 1990s. The reason for the decline in the
    24 inch wheel mountain bike sector is that kids these days want BMXs instead. In the 1990s profit
    margins on kids bikes were very low due to foreign imports and Raleigh had difficulty in the adult
    mountain bike sector because they were seen as not good enough compared to the high end makes and
    too expensive for those who want an occasional or commuting bike. With the recent proliferation of
    the BMX, the 24 inch mountain bike sector has been badly undercut to the point where the only models
    which sell are those with suspension. Raleigh refuses to go into the BMX manufacturing sector
    because their bosses and engineers have little understanding of BMX and its technologies.

    Can anyone shed more light on whether this is really true or not. The bike shop used to be
    heavily centred on raleigh childrens bikes but now mainly deals in BMX as that is where the
    profit seems to be.
     
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  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    The Technical Manager wrote:
    > A bike shop owner informed me that one of the reasons why Raleigh closed down its factory in
    > Nottingham is because of a severe decline in the sale of mountain bikes with 24 inch wheels which
    > was Raleighs primary money maker during the early and mid 1990s. The reason for the decline in the
    > 24 inch wheel mountain bike sector is that kids these days want BMXs instead. In the 1990s profit
    > margins on kids bikes were very low due to foreign imports and Raleigh had difficulty in the adult
    > mountain bike sector because they were seen as not good enough compared to the high end makes and
    > too expensive for those who want an occasional or commuting bike. With the recent proliferation of
    > the BMX, the 24 inch mountain bike sector has been badly undercut to the point where the only
    > models which sell are those with suspension. Raleigh refuses to go into the BMX manufacturing
    > sector because their bosses and engineers have little understanding of BMX and its technologies.
    >
    > Can anyone shed more light on whether this is really true or not. The bike shop used to be
    > heavily centred on raleigh childrens bikes but now mainly deals in BMX as that is where the
    > profit seems to be.

    BUllshit ... Most mountain bike wheels are 26" ... ;)

    --

    Completed 1611 Seti work units in 12319 hours http://setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu/
     
  3. Complete rubbish.

    The factory was closed because of high labour costs, and production moved abroad. Profit margins are
    low on most bikes - profits are made from the accessories.

    Regards,

    ---------------------------
    Peter Connolly Derby UK
     
  4. Elyob

    Elyob Guest

    Good troll ... :)
     
  5. "Peter Connolly" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > Complete rubbish.
    >
    > The factory was closed because of high labour costs, and production moved abroad. Profit margins
    > are low on most bikes - profits are made from the accessories.
    >

    Maybe the original poster was thinking of the mid-80s takeover by the Derby International group?
    This came about due to a downturn in Raleigh's fortunes, caused in part by the BMX craze running out
    of steam after they'd invested heavily in the "Burner" range. Things picked up not too long after,
    mind, especially once they'd started to dabble in the ATB market; the recent closure was a different
    kettle of fish, for the very reasons you state.

    David E. Belcher

    Dept. of Chemistry, University of York
     
  6. Arthur Clune

    Arthur Clune Guest

    BUllshit ... Most mountain bike wheels are 26" ... ;)

    Not on kids bikes they aren't. Read the original post.

    THough, as others have pointed out, that post is wrong for other reasons.

    Arthur

    --
    Arthur Clune http://www.clune.org Power is delightful. Absolute power is absolutely delightful -
    Lord Lester
     
  7. > The Technical Manager wrote:
    > > A bike shop owner informed me that one of the reasons why Raleigh closed down its factory in
    > > Nottingham is because of a severe decline in the sale of mountain bikes with 24 inch wheels
    > > which was Raleighs primary money maker during the early and mid 1990s. The reason for the
    > > decline in the 24 inch wheel mountain bike sector is that kids these days want BMXs instead. In
    > > the 1990s profit margins on kids bikes were very low due to foreign imports and Raleigh had
    > > difficulty in the adult mountain bike sector because they were seen as not good enough compared
    > > to the high end makes and too expensive for those who want an occasional or commuting bike. With
    > > the recent proliferation of the BMX, the 24 inch mountain bike sector has been badly undercut to
    > > the point where the only models which sell are those with suspension. Raleigh refuses to go into
    > > the BMX manufacturing sector because their bosses and engineers have little understanding of BMX
    > > and its technologies.
    > >
    > > Can anyone shed more light on whether this is really true or not. The bike shop used to be
    > > heavily centred on raleigh childrens bikes but now mainly deals in BMX as that is where the
    > > profit seems to be.
    >
    > BUllshit ... Most mountain bike wheels are 26" ... ;)

    26 inch is the size of adult mountain bike wheels.

    Its the decline in sales of the mountain bikes with 24 inch wheels for 9 to 14 year olds that the
    bike shop owner commented about which claims has badly undercut the profitability of Raleigh.
     
  8. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    Arthur Clune wrote:

    >
    >> BUllshit ... Most mountain bike wheels are 26" ... ;)
    >
    > Not on kids bikes they aren't. Read the original post.

    Did I say they were ? Read what I posted .. ;)

    > THough, as others have pointed out, that post is wrong for other reasons.

    I figured the original post was wrong, and a troll post anyway .. so replied in kind .. ;)

    --

    Completed 1611 Seti work units in 12319 hours http://setiathome.ssl.berkeley.edu/
     
  9. Mike Kapoor

    Mike Kapoor Guest

    The Technical Manager wrote:

    > A bike shop owner informed me that one of the reasons why Raleigh closed down its factory in
    > Nottingham is because of a severe decline in the sale of mountain bikes with 24 inch wheels which
    > was Raleighs primary money maker during the early and mid 1990s. The reason for the decline in the
    > 24 inch wheel mountain bike sector is that kids these days want BMXs instead. In the 1990s profit
    > margins on kids bikes were very low due to foreign imports and Raleigh had difficulty in the adult
    > mountain bike sector because they were seen as not good enough compared to the high end makes and
    > too expensive for those who want an occasional or commuting bike. With the recent proliferation of
    > the BMX, the 24 inch mountain bike sector has been badly undercut to the point where the only
    > models which sell are those with suspension. Raleigh refuses to go into the BMX manufacturing
    > sector because their bosses and engineers have little understanding of BMX and its technologies.

    It certainly is a nail in Raleigh's coffin although the primary reason for the factory closure is
    cheap foreign imports and the attitude of Raleigh's bosses in that they want the company to make
    money rather than bikes. The Nottingham factory has been suffering a long and slow decline and in
    some respects it is surprising that it was still functioning until the end of last year.

    > Can anyone shed more light on whether this is really true or not. The bike shop used to be
    > heavily centred on raleigh childrens bikes but now mainly deals in BMX as that is where the
    > profit seems to be.

    I used to work in the bike retailing business. In the mid 1990s 24" wheel mountain bikes were big
    sellers and Raleigh at the time were seen as a quality make in that particular sector. Whether they
    were the most profitable product area or not is probably only known to the accountants at Raleigh
    but they certainly had strengths in terms of volumes sold at least from the shop at which I worked.
    At the time sales of Raleigh mountain bikes with 16" and 20" wheels and also the lower end adult
    bikes were declining from cheaper imports but sales of Raleigh mountain bikes with 24" wheels were
    affected less by the imports probably on account of their perceived quality and a good name so that
    kids or their parents would pay that little bit extra for quality on a 24" wheel bike than they
    would when buying something smaller.

    In 1998 when the shop started selling more and more BMXs and less and less 24" wheel mountain bikes
    of all makes. I enquired at Raleigh about whether they would start producing BMXs as it appeared to
    be a high growth area and the shop had good dealings with Raleigh. Their reply was that they would
    not start producing BMXs again on the grounds that their engineers didn't really understand BMX and
    the fiasco that happened in the 1980s with the Burner and the resulting damage it caused to Raleigh.
    They sternly stated that Raleigh would stick to what it is good at rather than take big risks. They
    also mentioned that Derby didn't want Raleigh to produce BMXs as Derby owned Diamondback and that
    Raleigh dealers were also Diamondback dealers as well.

    When I left the position in the bike shop in 2001 sales of 24" wheel mountain bikes were way down on
    what they were when I started and over half sold were the suspension models. The shop actually went
    and discounted a large quantity of standard 24" wheel mountain bikes to clear them as sales were so
    poor and make way for new products, mainly BMX as that was what was now making money for the shop.

    To summarise things the resurge of the BMX in the past 5 or so years has badly undercut sales of
    24" wheel mountain bikes with Raleigh being one of the losers from the changes in consumption
    patterns of kids and teenagers and Raleigh's refusal to cater to newer tastes. If the BMX didn't
    make a comeback then a possibility exists that the Nottingham factory would have kept going for a
    few more years but cheap imports would probably have forced it out of business sooner or later
    unless they seriously rationalised their product range and concentrated on a small number of higher
    end products.

    On the other hand I reckon that a British company could successfully manufacture medium to high end
    BMXs retailing at around £300 at a factory in Britain.
     
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