Export And Local E-Bike Market Drive Czech Bicycle Industry
PRAGUE, Czech Republic – Known as an important production base for the European bicycle industry, Czech Republic enjoyed a major growth of e-bike sales on its home market this year. Based on customer’s import data and local production statistics, the total market volume of e-bikes was estimated at 65,000 units, a 30% increase compared with 2016.
Both Leader Fox CEO Pavel Muller and Apache Bicycles CEO Lukas Barta noted a major increase in e-bike sales. “We generated a 25 percent plus in e-bikes in all categories. Volume wise the e-bike has a market share of 15 percent now in Czech Republic while it generates some 40 percent of the turn-over,” says Pavel Muller. One of the reason for this boom is the local economy as the country’s GDP increase by 4.7 percent last year.
Regular bike stagnation
Also for Apache Bicycles 2017 was a good year. Our e-bike sales expanded by 40 percent while the regular bicycle sales are stagnating,” confirmed Lukas Barta. “The biggest increase was generated by the e-MTB category.” Approximately 95 percent of all e-bike sold in Czech Republic originates from China. In response to the European Union’s ongoing investigation on e-bike dumping from China, Leader Fox CEO Pavel Muller stated: “I do not think that all e-bikes from China have a poor quality. I am generally opposed to protectionism, it spoils the market, and it makes the producers in Europe less keen on competition. That’s not good.”
Export still the base
However, export is still the base of the bicycle industry in Czech Republic. According to the Czech Statistical Office, the year to year export of e-bikes between October 2016 and 2017 had a value of 109.6 million euro. During this period the export of regular bicycles generated a turnover of 142.2 million euro. The country’s main export destinations were the Netherlands with a volume of 733,600 bicycles and Germany with 366,861 units, including 43,893 e-bikes, between October 2016 and 2017.
This autumn the Czech capital Prague became Europe’s fourth city where people could find ofo bikes in the streets. With a limited number of just 300 bikes, Prague already generated the highest rental ratio in ofo’s international network during the test phase. Most likely Prague, known for its hilly landscape, might be the test location for ofo’s new electric powered bike sharing system.
The innovative strength of the Czech bicycle industry was illustrated by the cooperation between the high-end frame manufacturer Festka and the well known sustainable and quality coffee company Nespresso. Festka made a bike frame out of recaptured and recycled aluminium coffee capsules. The tubes of the frame contain around 995 reclaimed Nespresso capsules. Finally, the Festka Nespresso bike was sold at auction for almost 6,000 euro to support the Foundation that supports homeless children.