Industry Briefs – Lively E-Bike Forum Highlights Differing Viewpoints

Lively E-Bike Forum Highlights Differing Viewpoints

Bicycle Industries Australia (BIA) hosted an online E-Bike Forum on Tuesday 23rd April to allow discussion amongst bike industry members across a range of sometimes contentious issues.

Because this event was not pre-publicised as a public forum, this article will not name any of the attendees or quote any of the specific comments that they made.

It was chaired by Leonard Greis who is chair of BIA and conducted by Peter Bourke, Executive Officer of BIA. There were 31 industry members present including importers of most major e-bike brands, plus niche importers and bicycle retailers.

The main points of contention were around what specification of e-bikes should be legal to ride in Australia. In particular relating to their power, speed, design and control systems.

Specifically, some attendees wanted throttle controlled e-bikes to be banned, while others base their businesses upon selling throttle controlled e-bikes and want them to continue.
In the same vein, some want design rules that require e-bikes to have an adjustable height saddle and others prefer fixed height.

There was discussion about the current rules, which make it legal to import and sell a bicycle that can only legally be ridden on private land, when the vast majority of times, those bicycles are ridden on roads and cycle paths.

BIA also reiterated that they are hoping to get the federal government to agree to remove all tariffs from e-bikes. Currently there is a 5% tariff on e-bikes imported from some, but not all countries.

Unfortunately, the meeting was cut short due to technical issues with the online link, but BIA said they’d be forming a standing committee to discuss the points raised in the meeting and try to reach a consensus policy viewpoint to put to all levels of government. The make-up of that committee had not been finalised when the link dropped out.

Lusty to Distribute Forbidden

Newcastle, NSW based wholesaler Lusty Industries announced on 11th April that it was the new Australian distributor for the Forbidden Bike Company.

The company, which is based on Vancouver Island in Canada, is named after their local riding spot, the Forbidden Plateau. Forbidden is a specialist MTB brand.

“We are thrilled to be starting this relationship with Forbidden Bikes. Knowing and riding the bikes for several years now has been great. It’s also given me time to lear deeply about whan Owen Pemberton (Forbidden’s founder) and the team have coming,” said Lusty Industries Managing Director Johnny McLean.

This is the second new high end MTB distribution announcement for Lusty in just two months. As we recently reported here, Lusty has also taken over distribution of Transition.

Bike store shop front

99Bikes Switches to Hubtiger Workshop Software

Specialist bicycle workshop software provider Hubtiger has won the contract to deploy their software in all 99Bikes locations across Australia and New Zealand.

The roll out was commenced in mid-February 2024 and was completed over the subsequent weeks.

Previously, the 99Bikes team had to copy and paste information between their point-of-sale (POS) system, NetSuite, and their previous workshop software. Hubtiger integrated their program with NetSuite allowing for automatic synchronisation of data between the two platforms.

Cale Argent, Technology Leader, 99Bikes said, “At 99Bikes, we’re always looking for ways to innovate and improve our services, which is why we’re thrilled to partner with Hubtiger. Their specialized workshop software will allow us to optimize our repair and maintenance operations, ensuring faster, more reliable service for our customers. This partnership embodies our commitment to leveraging technology to meet the evolving needs of our workshops and customers to ensure we continue to meet our vision to be the world’s most approachable bike shops.”

Stuart Blyth, CEO and Co-founder of Hubtiger said, “99Bikes moving to Hubtiger highlights their dedication to leading the cycling industry through technological innovation. This partnership is about setting new benchmarks for service efficiency and customer satisfaction, showing how forward-thinking solutions can shape the future of cycling services.”

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