Bike industry 2024 outlook: giant brands optimistic, component makers cautious

Aaron Lee, Taipei; Vyra Wu, DIGITIMES Asia 0


The global bicycle industry is navigating a divergent path towards recovery as Giant and Merida expressed optimism for a rebound in 2024, while e-bike component manufacturers remain cautiously reserved.

In a recent statement, Giant and Merida emphasized the anticipated end of inventory clearance by the end of 2024, with demand expected to fully recover as early as the third quarter. This positive outlook follows a challenging period marked by pandemic-driven demand surges and subsequent inventory challenges.

The Taipei Cycle Show, a key barometer for industry trends, concluded last week alongside the Sports and Fitness Taiwan (TaiSPO 2024). The joint expos saw a notable resurgence in visitor numbers, signaling a potential revival in consumer interest compared to the previous year.

However, despite the optimism from brand manufacturers, electric bicycle component manufacturers, including subsidiaries of Acer, such as Acer Gadget and Acer MPS, maintain a more reserved stance. They cite ongoing uncertainties and market dynamics, suggesting that the recovery may take longer to materialize.

Darfon, a component manufacturer in the electric bicycle sector, echoes this sentiment, cautioning against overly optimistic projections. While acknowledging some signs of inventory depletion in the latter half of 2024, Darfon emphasizes the need for prudence, particularly as the market shifts towards new product launches targeting 2025.

The disparity in industry outlooks underscores the complexity of the bicycle market's recovery journey. While some stakeholders anticipate a swift return to pre-pandemic activity levels, others tread cautiously amidst lingering uncertainties.

Against this backdrop, market observers note an uptick in promotional activities aimed at inventory clearance, signaling efforts to stimulate demand amidst evolving market dynamics. However, the pace and extent of the market's recovery remain subject to various factors, including geopolitical tensions and consumer sentiment.

As the bicycle industry navigates these challenges, stakeholders monitor market developments with a keen eye on emerging trends and opportunities. While the road ahead may present obstacles, industry players remain resilient, poised to adapt to changing market conditions and capitalize on new growth avenues.