BMC Refocuses with Divestment of Stromer and Bergamont
GRENCHEN, Switzerland – Next to its e-bike brand Stromer BMC Group is also divesting Bergamont. As part of a new brand strategy, on which Bike Europe interviewed BMC’s CEO Erwin Steinmann in its May 2015 edition, the Swiss bike maker has announced to sell its German Bergamont Fahrrad Vertrieb GmbH to competitor and countryman Scott Sports SA. The deal was finalized at the end of June.
Scott Sports takes over all Bergamont shares as well as the Swiss assets of the company. This means that not only the majority shareholding of the BMC Group in Bergamont Fahrrad Vertrieb are included but also the shares that were owned by Bergamont founder and GM Stefan Berkes.
Only a few months ago – last February – the new Bergamont owner Scott Sports SA itself was taken over. The company’s South-Korean distributor and apparel maker Youngone Corporation acquired a majority stake in, “The Swiss company with US roots”. Youngone Corp. also owns US outdoor company Outdoor Research in which the Korean outdoor and bikewear producer acquired a majority stake in March 2013. Youngone’s subsidiary Mountain Summit Holdings finalized this takeover.
Since Youngone’s acquisition of Scott Group the Swiss company is also licensee of Outdoor Research in Europe. With Bergamont Scott is now expanding its hardware range. According to industry insiders this deal aims – as the ones of Youngone One before – at establishing sourcing and distribution synergies.
Bergamont founder Berkes is to leave the company he owned but will remain active as a consultant. Day-to-day business is handled by product manager Martin Eberle and finance manager Wolfgang Winkler. Bergamont’s distribution in Switzerland will continue under the management of industry vet Stefan Schär. Bergamont’s HQ will remain in Hamburg and it is said that the German brand is to operate independently from its new owner Scott. Nevertheless, more on changes in distribution is to follow soon.
“As a well-established company within the bike and sporting industry Scott Sports is an ideal partner for Bergamont,” stated Thomas Binggeli in his role as president of the BMC Group Holding AG board. According to a press release Bergamont turnover has been more than doubled since the 2008 takeover by BMC Group.
Scott Sports CEO Beat Zaugg noted, “A well-established and successful brand like Bergamont fits perfectly in the bike portfolio of Scott Group. Particularly in Germany, Austria and Switzerland we expect lots of positive synergies.”
Related item: Bike Europe interviewed BMC’s CEO Erwin Steinmann