BMC and Stromer...

J.R.

Well-Known Member
Rumors about BMC and Stromer were finally put to rest last Friday 5/29/15. I think there's little chance Stromer is going anywhere, but if BMC wasn't able to make a profit with the high price of a Stromer there's obviously major changes needed if Stromer is to survive.

An amazing e-bike that needs better ownership and management!

"GRENCHEN, Switzerland – The appointment of Erwin Steinmann as CEO of the BMC Group last year was the start of a widespread reorganization program at the Swiss ‘House of Brand’ BMC, Bergamont and Stromer. This restructuring includes the possible sale of the e-bike brand Stromer."

http://www.bike-eu.com/sales-trends/nieuws/2015/6/bmc-group-ceo-stromer-for-sale-10124091
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
It was kind of overdone. When you say something is that great, there is no room for error, but there were some problems. I saw this a million times, from NYCE Wheels, because it was one of those Google AdSense deals:

"The Stromer ST2 will change the face of electric bicycles forever."

It wasn't a mid-drive and the year before we were told mid-drive was the only drive, the drive that would become the standard.

Plus the Sondo bike has that lunch box deal. How can you compete with that?
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
Not overdone for the EBR community and Stromer forum here. Stromer is a beloved brand here, arguably more than most others. It has become the standard for quality in ebikes, overpriced quality in my opinion, but that's beside the point of this thread. I think BMC has mismanaged this brand and hopefully someone can come in and save it from becoming the Edsel of the ebike world.
 

Llcjay

Member
Doubt Stromer survives the year. St2 has to be a money loser. And the have no reasonably priced bikes. And no mid drives.

BMC isn't large enough to carry a brand losing money
 

bluecat

Well-Known Member
myStromer AG was founded 2009 by Thömu. At this time, Thömu's Veloshop was a small but successful bike manufacturer. 2011, Andy Rhis joined the company and myStromer AG becames part of BMC. Rhis is a very successful entrepreneur. His company Sonova (former Phonak) makes him a billionaire.

With this money, he supports for his pleasure a football club (BSC YB) and the bicycle brands BMC, Bergamont and Stromer. Furthermore, he pays the bill from the BMC racing team. myStromer AG now needs the next step: become bigger. For this, they are looking out for new money - or let's say venture capital. Thats it.

A few words about their products: The classic Stromer was groundbreaking, but with several issues. The ST1 is far more robust. The ST2 is a complete new bike with mostly in house designed components.

Is there any competitor with a similar product in large series?


Thomas "Thömu" Binggeli and Andy Rhis

upload_2015-6-2_19-53-58.png
 

stevenast

Well-Known Member
Stromer, will it survive?

Pro: good looking, sturdy, fast, high tech

Con: heavy, rough ride, quality issues, value

Stromer elicits great enthusiasm from some members of this forum, especially the owners of this e-bike!
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
First of all,
This is old news.

The rumor that BMC is trying sell off Stromer, because of its negative cash flow is just baseless and flawed. ST2 is probably their most in-demand product.

I have spent fair bit of time with their product managers and I see truly knowledgeable team. Can't say the same for other brands.

Software issues? It's mostly the utility of certain app functions. Their drive algorithm is vastly sophisticated compared to competitors.

Not trying to defend it. They do have certain flaws and limited product line.

Because of their pricing structure, you don't see them in every shop. But, it's completely baseless to say about their negative cash flow. May be their American sales isn't bigger than EU sales.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
Doubt Stromer survives the year. St2 has to be a money loser. And the have no reasonably priced bikes. And no mid drives.

BMC isn't large enough to carry a brand losing money

Oh my friend, what can I say?
BMC is very well endowed and actually they won XC world championship. They just introduced revolutionary soft tail bike. They have incredible racing team. Have you ever been to Interbike?
That's a great place to talk to company people and gather valuable info.
 
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stevenast

Well-Known Member
First of all,
This is old news.

The rumor that BMC is trying sell off Stromer, because of its negative cash flow is just baseless and flawed. ST2 is probably their most in-demand product.

I have spent fair bit of time with their product managers and I see truly knowledgeable team. Can't say the same for other brands.

Software issues? It's mostly the utility of certain app functions. Their drive algorithm is vastly sophisticated compared to competitors.

Not trying to defend it. They do have certain flaws and limited product line.

Because of their pricing structure, you don't see them in every shop. But, it's completely baseless to say about their negative cash flow. May be their American sales isn't bigger than EU sales.

@Ravi Kempaiah , congratulations on your association with Stromer! For the benefit of all the new readers of the forum, with all due respect, may I suggest that, in accordance with bullet point #5 at the link below, that you use a signature on your posts so everyone knows!

http://electricbikereview.com/community/threads/ebr-etiquette-please-be-kind.1952/
 

bluecat

Well-Known Member
So I will unveil my relationship to Thömu:

Last year, I had the opportunity visiting BMC @ Grenchen. I've taken this picture; if you're familiar with the impec and how it's build, you recognize the Herzog Radialflechter Typ RF 1/144-100.



Earlier in 2014, I've attended the ST 2 launch show @ Oberwangen. Maybe, some of the readers here will recognize the expert to the right.

upload_2015-6-2_23-4-58.png


And finally, I have to say, i'm writing reports @ stromerforum.ch - but I'm independent and not paid by any company related to the e-bike business.
 

Ravi Kempaiah

Well-Known Member
No one has had more Stromer problems than Mark (@opimax ). He has had 5 motor changes.
His new ST1 platinum still needs repair and the shop he bought from doesn't exist. But, he has received a replacement bike and his problem is more to do with finding the the right kind of shop who can help him.

Before I got my ST2, I was wary of all these reports. Stromer has been very responsive and growing as a company.
They are fully aware of the competition from Accell and other brands.

How visionary their management is something we are unsure of.
 
D

Deleted member 803

Guest
Let's not be too harsh on Stromer. I am sure they are hitting anticipated targets in certain regions, but their limited offerings and high price points, will, most likely, not produce the North American numbers necessary for profitable growth. BMC has a heritage of producing very high quality products and its easy to see that Stromer is striving for design and performance excellence rather than unit sales. My recommendation to Stromer is to focus on those territories that are e-bike mature and where bikes serve as primary transportation. Stromer does not have an adequate value proposition for North America. Perhaps in the next 5-10 years that will change. The news article makes it perfectly clear that Rhys does not want to sink a lot of money into Stromer and is willing to partner or sell. You can politic the response all you want but whenever a CEO seeks partnership or sale it is because financials are NOT working. Not working can mean many things including loss, insufficient return on the dollar, or a growth curve that is insufficient to satisfy shareholders. It could also be that BMC wants to focus its dollars in another direction. Stromer is a tough sell to the bike industry as they are niche products in an immature market. Perhaps an investor outside of the bike industry would take a chance but it does not seem plausible that Accel or Derby or Giant or Specialized or Trek would take them on. IMHO
 
D

Deleted member 803

Guest
I think Stromer's real problem is the absence of diversity in their lineup. They are only catering to a high end niche market segment, which is shrinking very rapidly due to fierce competition. The strong Swiss franc isn't helping either. Even if the bike is mostly made outside Europe, the cost of labor in Switzerland isn't cheap. How many managers and R&D people work in Oberwangen? Furthermore, Stromer's strong point is selling S-Pedelecs, but the Euro market is mostly locked into 25km/h bikes. Finally, local competitor Flyer is doing much better than Stromer in the rental business. And that's a business that counts. Rentals offer fabulous product visibility. Not to mention the thousands of spare parts you sell... Stromer seems to have completely missed the boat on that one.

The ST2 is a great bike that's light years ahead of the competition, but it's not what the average consumer wants to buy. And that's where the big bucks are going to be made. So Stromer needs a strategy where they can get a piece of that cake while still selling the types of products that are distinctive to the company.
+1
 

Operator7

Active Member
Personally speaking, as a noob, objective, doing a lot of research... I don't see any bikes that compare well to the ST1 or ST2. Specialized comes close, but the Turbo X lacks the speed and power of the ST1, and the Turbo X lacks the battery (and also speed and power and much more) of the ST2. The competitors to the ST1 seem to be Easy Motion Neo series, which run $4300, so price is about the same, yet the ST1 seems to beat them in both power and battery. Other bikes like Focus and Kalkoff do not have the speed nor power (nor fun factor). Haibike might come close to ST1, but not quite. Add the fact that Stromers have an integrated look, and Stromer wins again. I mean I like that Haibike gets funky with its styling, but the battery sticks out like a sore thumb, compared to the integrated look.

This is just my opinion, as a noob, as someone who is completely objective (obviously I want to make the best purchase for my dollar), who has been researching this for several months.
 
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George S.

Well-Known Member
Accel mentions the 45 kph Speed Pedelec in their annual report as an area for growth, notably in Europe. I don't know how this is progressing.

My gripe with Speed Pedelec is simple. It's not being allowed on bike paths, and the whole trend to speed is making ebikes a tough sell for regular bike infrastructure. It wouldn't shock me if the S-Ped completely loses its bike status and becomes a low power motor vehicle of some sort. That is, something with full license, registration and insurance requirements. Check of the Minnesota laws.

At some point you are going to have the Speed Pedelec guys on one side, and the basic sub-20 ebike guys on the other. You're probably going to have Accel/Bosch/Euro high end stuff on one side, maybe CF stuff on the other.

For me, high end S-Ped becomes even less attractive as you climb toward potential electric motorcycle prices. Zero just dropped prices, based on battery costs, and battery costs seem to be trending down.

Does the premise of S-Ped, this whole high level power assist thing, however brilliant in its implementation, really hold up? You can't ride on bike paths and you're going 27 mph. Is that enough?

This is clearly aimed at young people. Up to now, the ebike has been dependent (US) on the older demographic. So I probably don't get it (see picture of author). I mean, I don't get it. It's a major shift. I'm trying to digest it. I don't like the shift in the regulations, moving ebikes farther from non-powered bikes, in particular.

Smart people have pointed out that the US ebike market is not very mature. It's 'old' but not mature. It's really tough to move a lot of this Euro stuff into the US market. I know my gut reaction is, well, "NO".
 
As a middle-aged cyclist on my third ebike in 15 years, I see great potential among tech-savvy professionals who want to feel like super heroes during their daily commute. The battery range of my ST2 opens possibilities for cycling I had never imagined. I'm a fearful rider, and don't take advantage of the power/speed. But I take risks with distance and weather because I know if I get tired and need help, the power is there.

Cycling in Seattle, I am regularly passed by people in multi-thousand dollar bikes. The ST1 is not that expensive, as expensive bikes go. I hope Stromer continues to develop their very exciting products. Biking is not just a market, it's a dream.