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Cannondale Drops U.S. Manufacturing, Creates Design Center

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Dorel, Cannondale’s parent company (along with GT, Schwinn and Mongoose bicycle brands), has announced that from 2010, all Cannondale frames will be built in Asia.

Currently, their low-end models are built in the U.S., and the higher end stuff was already being made overseas.  Their plan, per the press release, is to create five “centers of excellence” around the globe, with the Bethel, CT, plant becoming a “global headquarters and innovation center for high-end and enthusiast bicycles”.  The others are:

  • Basel, Switzerland: “for high-end and enthusiast bicycles sold/marketed in Europe”
  • Madison, WI: “for global mass market products”
  • Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada: “for active lifestyle and urban apparel and footwear” ie Sugoi”
  • Taichung, Taiwan: “for coordination of sourcing, testing and quality of Asian suppliers/partners”

All North American product development for the cycling brands they own will  be centered in Bethel, CT, in the newly named Cycling Sports Group.  Read “more” for quotes from their top brass…

Robert Baird, President of Dorel’s Recreational/Leisure segment, said: “Our vision is to create the most innovative and admired company in the recreation and leisure marketplace, and to become a global leader, which is why the Dorel segment was established in the first place.

“The strategy for transforming that vision into reality requires a unified, collaborative, and highly engaged workforce, relentlessly committed to innovation and supported by management in rapidly advancing the quality of the products and services we deliver.

“The Cannondale purchase led us to segment our bicycle business to provide best-in-class service to the distinct retailer categories. Mass market bikes are sold to consumers through Pacific Cycle, while high-end specialty retailers have been our channel of choice for premium and enthusiast bikes through CSG.

Naturally, Cannondale and CSG are key components of our commitment to our independent bicycle dealers as we realize how critical IBDs are to the cycling community and to us.

“To ensure we delight our customers with our distinctive brands, innovative products and impactful in-store programs, we are also consolidating our North American CSG operations to two locations from five.”

Dorel will create “one of the best bicycle testing laboratories in the world at its facilities” in Bedford, PA. CSG will also begin to focus its existing operations in Bedford on final bicycle and Headshok assembly, CNC machining, and customer support.

Bedford’s manufacturing operations will be fully outsourced by 2010. Headcount at Bedford will be reduced from the current 300 employees to approximately 100 by the end of 2010.

“Today is the beginning of a very exciting period for Dorel’s recreational and leisure business,” said Jeff McGuane, President CSG North America. McGuane has been with Cannondale since 1994 and until recently was President of CSG International.

McGuane continued: “We have realised significant benefits from identifying and acquiring strong brand leaders in the recreation and leisure industries, as well as driving organic growth from our existing businesses. However, for us to continue on our quest to remain competitive and to become the world’s premier provider in delivering the top recreation and leisure brands and products that consumers trust and want, we must continue to simplify and streamline our operations to help us drive forward.

“Creating the Center of Excellence in Bethel, consolidating our CSG resources within North America to two main locations, and leveraging the manufacturing resources at our Taiwan-based Center of Excellence are critical steps along the path of achieving our objective – becoming the global innovation leader in the recreation and leisure segment.”

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MrUniteUs
15 years ago

I was consider buying Cannondale because I wanted to buy American.

I think it is important that we continue to make quality products this country, otherwise we
won’t have a quality future.

JeffinCalifornia
JeffinCalifornia
15 years ago

I too am considering an American Made Bicycle purchase. I thought the new administration was offering incentives to keep employees in the USA? Are they pursuing this? Cannondale was the last of the bike manufacturers to have a Made in America process (as far as I am aware.) They even had that sticker posted across their high-end bicycles as part of their company motto.

Business is business, but greed and outsourcing are sad results of this. I believe good management could keep their current employees and market this aspect and still be successful. “Outsourcing” is a cheap, lazy, insensitive way to deal with a business.

clifford
clifford
15 years ago

its absolutely heartbreaking to me. and the funny thing is im not even entirely against outsourcing. my cannondale synapse has a frome that was made in taiwan. the reason i will neevr buy a cannondale ever again (and the reason most cannondale people will never buy one) isnt just that they wont be made in amaerica. i actually wouldnt mind if they were manufactured overseas and developed, designed,tested and engeneered here) what is upsetting me is that they wont even be assembled here. and more importantly that they are going to be mass produced on the same assembly lines as schwinn, gt, and mongoose (ie; garbage wall-mart bicycles) there wont even be an independant cannondale design building. its going to be an -all-in-one- schwinn,gt,mongoose,cannondale design operation. i wouldnt even mind if they wanted to outsource some manufacturing overseas. but they are outsourcing 100% of cannondale overseas.

they say they want to become “the most respected” bicycle company. i think its very clear if you talk to any bicycle enthusiast they they are already going to be the single most hated bicycle company. its not just that there outsourcing its that they are completely eliminating the independance of the company.

Kev
Kev
14 years ago

I hope people are expressing this to cannondale. It is truly sad to see that in a “movement” to buy local and support our own economy, that a company that sold itself as an American company would now move out. 200 jobs lost from one company doesn’t seem like a lot, but when countless other manufacturing jobs have been lost over the years, steel companies going, auto makers downsizing, where do you have to go. Oh, I got it, all those skilled welders/fabricators can work at Wal Mart and buy a cannondale in isle six! I just bought my third and final cannondale. What bike is made here, I’ll buy it!

Steven
Steven
14 years ago

If this rumor is true then we can all look forward to used Cannondales becoming increasingly popular (and valuable) on sites like Craigslist and eBay. If you have a Cannondale now – consider yourself lucky. Keep it! I’ll certainly never buy a new one without that sticker.

james
12 years ago

Looks like another good bike company moves its manufacturing to asia. It some how does not surpise me as the greedy shareholders of the parent company are never happy till the skilled worker stoops down to minimum wage or maybe even less. I hope you Americans boycot buying from them. There is some could small frame builders but with more people out of work they become less affordable. You want a company to boycott look no further than Apple, what a deuce bag greedy company that basically supports slavery in another country (China). Their greedy markup more than covers their cost to assemble their phones at home. Maybe you will be able to soon buy your Cannondale at the white trash store.(walmart) Dorels other brands have been dropped down to that level. Soon maybe all of us will have to work in retail. Thank free trade for that as large corporation do whatever they F______g please.
Thanks James

Robert A
Robert A
12 years ago

Robert Baird has no clue on the importance or respect for the USA or why people buy a Cannondale products (quality, made in USA or suppoting our country)
Another fat cat destroys another US company.

Loren
Loren
12 years ago

Any idea of how to find out if the Cannondale is a before or after (Dorel Dilema)?

Chris
Chris
11 years ago

Look at the welds. I have a last gen Cannondale Capo, best bike I have ever owned, but it is obvious by the welding that it was made by hand. If it has the traditional made in Bedford pa logo on it than you know.

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