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Shimano Icon Hans van Vliet Says Goodbye


FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, Germany – At a farewell party which took place during last week’s Eurobike, Hans van Vliet said goodbye to about 150 guests from the bike industry. Van Vliet, who was raised in his father’s bicycle shop, played a ‘tremendous’ role in the growth of Shimano in Europe during his 40 years career at Shimano.

Shimano Icon Hans van Vliet Says Goodbye
At a farewell party Yozo Shimano (r.), President of Shimano Inc, said to Hans van Vliet, ‘You have contributed tremendously to the development of the company Shimano.’ – Photo Bike Europe

Shimano treated Hans van Vliet, who was accompanied by his family and his two brothers, on a cocktail and dinner party at beautiful Monfort Castle on the shores of Lake Constance. Of course Van Vliet’s long Shimano career was reviewed by several speakers. Among them Yozo Shimano, President of Shimano Inc. He remembered his first encounter with Van Vliet back in 1977. “I remember to be impressed by a very tall and skinny man,”


Yozo Shimano praised Hans van Vliet’s vision on the bicycle market in Europe and on his contribution to the company’s development during all his 40 years at Shimano. He said, “You have contributed tremendously to the growth of the company Shimano. Without you, we would not have reached our current market position. We are truly grateful for that.”

Views on the past and future

In its September edition Bike Europe interviews the man who launched many, many Shimano products, with countless presentations for dealers, product managers, and bike makers; who was one of the Eurobike initiators, now the world’s biggest bike show. In recent years Hans van Vliet was engaged in strategy. In Bike Europe’s September edition he says goodbye – with views on the past, but also on the future of bicycles and cycling.

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