High Quality Return for China Cycle

Shanghai, China

A quantum leap forward in the quality of Chinese bicycle products was on display when China Cycle 2023 was held in Shanghai this month – the first time the event has been held since 2019 because of Covid restrictions.

TEBCO managing director Tony Morgan reported back to The Latz Report when he returned to this year’s event on 5th to 8th May, where he was stunned by the size, the variety and quality of exhibits at the Shanghai New International Exhibition Centre.

Tony says the improvement in quality across the board was “sensational”.

“Previously, you’d visit the stands of the biggest suppliers and the quality of product would be great for some products,” he said.

“Anything that was state-of-the-art four years ago is now a bit of a dinosaur.”

“Now there are hundreds and hundreds of suppliers, nowhere near as big as the major suppliers, but their product is just as good.

“It’s four years since the previous China show, which is an eternity for the electric bicycle industry, and the progress Chinese manufacturers have made in that time in just astonishing.

“Anything that was state-of-the-art four years ago is now a bit of a dinosaur.”

At the same time, he said China Cycle 2023 reaffirmed how dramatically global demand for product has declined in recent months.

“Chinese manufacturers are desperate for business as they try to maintain some consistent level of production but are just faced with greatly diminished demand and are losing key staff at a very worrying pace.

“Worldwide demand for most products has fallen off the cliff.”

The trade show also highlighted how much e-bikes are dominating demand and the focus of Chinese manufacturers.

“Unless a booth had a significant presence of e-bikes, they were deserted for the four days,” Tony explained.

“There are now very few Chinese suppliers who do mechanic bikes, who do kids bikes, that don’t also have a significant contingent of e-bikes as well.

“Going through the halls with components and accessories only was much the same. There was no one there.

“People have warehouses full of them, so they didn’t need to see what was available.”

Tony said he was equally surprised by the extremely low contingent of foreign visitors to this year’s show.

“Some of our major suppliers who had stalls at the event estimated by number of foreign visitors was down around 10 to 15% of pre-Covid levels,” he said.

He speculated that could be largely attributed to the substantially reduced availability of flights into China and increased challenges with getting a Visa to enter the country. Given the amount of industry change since the previous China Cycle, he believed there would have been a lot more foreign visitors if getting into the country hadn’t been so difficult.

Tony said it was quite apparent there is a reluctance among foreigners to travel to China post-Covid.

Leave a Comment