Well, it’s April 2021 and the past 12 months have just been weird.
Having been in the bike industry for the better part of 25 years, I can honestly say this is the first time I am experiencing this kind of disruption â€“ for lack of a better word or description.
With the FARR brand being just 3 and a bit years old, we are actually in a great position to expand our distribution network as well as introduce a bunch of really cool and innovative products IF ONLY we were not operating during a pandemic.
By now the bike boom has been well documented by most of the cycling media and all signs of it going back to the way it was pre-Covid are all but gone.
When the first wave of we’re checking on the price and we need to confirm the lead-time replies started to happen, I initially felt like this was some kind of specific issue to us and our supply chain. It was not!
And now, almost 6 months later, it has become the norm and there is a daily struggle for all bicycle-related vendors to secure raw materials and just be able to commit to taking a new order.
To say the supply chain is broken would be a simple way of acknowledging and trying to find a reason for the situation.
However, the reality is that this is the result of a complex chain of events that started way back in January / February 2020. We are now so far gone that the ramifications are what we are going to have to deal with.
The other side of the coin of this “bike boom” is that it has potentially created the perfect storm for the bigger players/brands/assemblers to secure and control the supply of key products to complete a bicycle. This is NOT GOOD!
The race to secure allocation of these key components is on and by the major brands effectively controlling the capacity of key vendors, the middle and smaller/new brands are going to be left without the products they need to supply the boom and their customers.
From Distributors to Dealers to Riders â€“ we all gonna potentially lose out! It really will be a very boring industry if only a handful of major players are left to innovate or launch new products.
Add in the recent surge in shipping costs on top of these escalating production costs and we could see ourselves ( the bike industry ) actually chasing customers away from our beautiful sport and pastime.
Whilst we don’t have a solution to the current situation, we are committed to continuing the development and design of our new products with the hope that we will be able to get them into production and to market in the shortest possible time. Some of these will be arriving as early as May but many are realistically only going to see the trails in early 2022.
We’ll keep posting and sharing some of these new products on our social media over the coming weeks and just hope that everyone will be mindful and understanding of the current situation.
Thanks for reading this and thank you for all the support!