Why We Bought Cell Bikes?
When James and I first started Bicycles Online back in 2011, Cell bikes were one of our major competitors and a company we really looked up to. They were one of the first Australian retailers to source bicycles direct from factory.
This disruptive model drew a lot of critics from within the industry, and whilst the initial range of bikes weren’t amazing, this changed as the business grew.
In many ways, we owe much of our success to the trail that they blazed. When we launched in 2011, we too were keen advocates of the direct to market approach, and wanted to improve on it, in a way that was different from Cell. We figured that we simply couldn’t be exceptional at both designing bikes as well as selling them online. So we chose to pursue the latter – developing ourselves to be experts at selling complete bicycles online and shipping them efficiently and ready-to-ride out of the box.
We thought we looked pretty sharp online in 2011
But in reality this is where we started out from
You can’t see it from the pictures, but we ran the entire business off a single extension lead from next door.
We teamed up with Polygon as our brand and somehow managed to convince them to allow us to sell their bikes online. They were a great win for us as they were the only major factory that had their own brand which was not being sold already in Australia. They took an enormous leap of faith in us and we are forever grateful that they did.
And so began our (slow) journey of growth, testing, refinement and improvement, - with a few pretty big business lessons along the way.
Hence, it was a big symbolic step for us, when we recently purchased Cell - a real coming of age to be able to acquire a business we had so much respect for. And that is why we hope that we can continue to resonate with you today. We have changed and grown a lot, and at times it seems surreal to look back and see where we have come from.
What hasn’t changed, however, are our values, values that I am confident will take us onwards
1. Providing incredible value on bikes
2. Removing the confusing marketing jargon that is so common in our industry
3. Constantly learning and improving
We are proud to employ a team of 15 passionate cyclists from all walks of life that run the day to day operations of Bicycles Online and we look forward to continuing to innovate and improve the Australian online cycling market.
Bicycles Online Co-Founder