Taipei Cycle Forum Presented Insights and Tools for Transition
TAICHUNG, Taiwan – A transformation of Taiwan’s bike industry is needed as its main markets are changing rapidly. In Europe and the US a two-folded revolution is taking place: rapidly growing online sales as well as electrification. The Taipei Cycle Forum, which took place last Friday in Taichung, provided its 250 participants visions on how Taiwan companies can handle their transition towards online focused business models and the needs that come with the e-bike trend.
A 2-minute film that presented a nutshell vision on the current ecommerce trend in Europe and the US kicked off Taipei Cycle Forum. In this film it is said “Are Alibaba, Amazon, ChainReaction conquering the world? Are these online platforms the victors of the ecommerce battle that reached the bike markets? Their rapidly growing online sales is having a huge impact in the US. And Europe follows. Also local operating webshops are disrupting the business. Their intensively advertised price offers kills reputed chain stores and IBD’s. This triggers renowned brands to switch their focus from dealers to consumers. Their websites are becoming webshops. But online sales generates orders that need to be fulfilled in hours and not weeks or months. Increased supply chain speed becomes a number one priority. Can new ways of robotized manufacturing and speed factories offer solutions?
Digitalization & factory automation
This question was answered at the Taipei Cycle Forum. It came from one of the world’s biggest industrial conglomerates; Siemens. The company’s Taiwan branch Vice President Tino Hildebrand, with a background in factory and processes robotization, said that factory automation needs to be connected with digitalization. This brings the suited solution for catering to the current and future (ecommerce) market and customer requirements. He said “Time to market is a key requirement today as well as flexibility and customization. For that you need data and the digitalization of your operating processes. This is changing everything. Integrating it in your operations is not an option. It’s a must.”
Electrification of EU and US markets
What the Taipei Cycle Forum also discussed was what the electrification of the EU and US markets brings to the Taiwan industry. Walter Yeh, President and CEO of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), that in cooperation with this trade journal organized Taipei Cycle Forum 2018, pointed to the e-bike trend. In his opening remarks he explained that the e-bike trend is currently the ultimate driver for growth of the export of the Taiwan bicycle industry. He said “In the first two months of 2018 the e-bike export from Taiwan increased in volume by 96%. In US dollars per exported unit the increase was even more; a big 29%. It shows that e-bikes are a major trend in Europe as well as in the United States. This Forum is to explain this trend in detail and the great effects it can bring to the Taiwan bike industry.”
Changed Taipei International Cycle Show
TAITRA President Yeh continued with “E-bikes also change the Taipei International Cycle Show. For this year the dates of the show has been changed to October 31 to November 3. The Show will display the latest in e-bikes and in e-bike components. And it will in particular show Taiwan’s ability to connect its electronics industry to the bike industry in creating connected products and sensors and other important components for electric bicycles. Today’s Taipei Cycle Forum is also about connections; about how to connect Taiwan with the world in relation to ecommerce, industry 4.0 and by sharing the latest trends and updates in e-bikes and to learn on to get to better strategies.”
TAITRA President Walter Yeh ended his opening speech by telling the audience that in March 2019 Nangang exhibition Hall 2 will be officially opened. It brings possibilities to have even more exhibitors at the Taipei International Cycle Show.