Cycling innovation sought in Scotland

Businesses with an idea or innovation for the mountain biking or cycling markets are being urged to get along to one of the Mountain Bike Centre of Scotland’s (MTBCoS) Innovation Clinics.
They’re being offered support to develop world-class mountain bike products and services by the MTBCoS, which is a joint initiative headed up by Edinburgh Napier University and Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland (DMBinS), with the backing of Scottish Enterprise.
Fifteen Scottish companies, including five from the east coast, are already set to showcase their innovative products this week (August 26 – 29) at Eurobike in Germany, where Scotland will be pitched as a key player in the global cycle market.
Anatom, Cyclehack, Cyclelogical, Dirt School, Elkah Ltd, eVentureworks, Free Flow, Grease Monkey Cycles, PackaShack, Quickfire Clothing, Sansooz, Scottish Cycle Tourism Forum, Scottoiler, Trakke, and Veloeye will all showcase their wares in the Scottish Development International (SDI)-funded Scottish Pavilion at the world’s largest bike show.
Among the developments on display will be an electric bike, mountain bike coaching app, bike repair station, designer cycling luggage range, bike lubricants, and specialist cycling socks and footwear.
Each of the Scottish exhibiters has received early-stage business support from MTBCoS and DMBinS, such as at innovation clinics, leading on to market research, and product development and testing.
Graeme White, head of international tourism at SDI, said: “Mountain biking contributes £119 million to the Scottish economy. We can grow this further by tapping into global opportunities, both to attract bike tourists to Scotland, and by working with Scottish companies to produce products for this global market.
“By attending Eurobike, our companies are being introduced to global buyers and distributors which can help them secure new revenue streams. Last year we helped 13 Scottish companies attend the event and as a result these companies are cumulatively forecasting an additional £5.81 million from international sales.”
Last year, Eurobike attracted 1,250 exhibitors from 49 countries, 46,300 trade visitors from 111 counries, and additional 21,100 bike fans on the public day and 1852 journalists from 46 countries. One of last year’s participating Scottish companies was Cut Media, the company behind last year’s film, ‘The Ridge’, featuring Danny Macaskill. The film continues to be a huge viral success, racking up over 36 million views on YouTube.
Chris Simpson, head of cycle product development at Scottoiler–Cycling, said “We’ve been in the motorcycle industry for over 30 years, with previous attempts to diversify our products for the cycle market. We decided to attend one of the innovation clinics from DMBinS and MTBCoS, and we’ve been blown away by the level and quality of support available to us.
“From testing our products with Edinburgh Napier University, working with elite riders and other businesses, market research and focus groups, each stand of support has helped us make our business a success. Eurobike is a key route to market for us, so this year we’re launching a new automatic cycle chain lubricant product. In fact, we’ve entered this product into the coveted Eurobike Innovation Awards so we have our fingers crossed that we win and secure worldwide recognition.”
Danny Cowe, business development executive at MTBCoS, added: “The businesses participating this year are great examples of how our support pathway, from innovation to internationalisation, can help a company grow. We also have an additional ten companies taking part in a learning journey in Germany, with the aim of making them ready to take a space on the Eurobike pavilion next year.
“There’s no doubt, with the notable exception of Endura, Scottish companies historically weren’t taking full advantage of the economic opportunities mountain biking presents. Our free and confidential nationwide support is available to any company operating in the mountain bike sector, and we’re always keen to talk to more companies and entrepreneurs.”