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Back to Rider Owned – Kona Buys Brand Back From Kent Outdoors

Kona Ouroboros head tube
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Big news for those of you following the Kona saga. After a tumultuous year culminating with a “no show” by the iconic brand at this year’s Sea Otter Classic, there is fantastic news is coming out from the Kona camp. Something we all need on a Monday. 

Just as we in the industry were ready to commit the Kona Bicycles of our past to memory, a communique from the Kona team hit our inbox.  

Kona-History-Wall

Return to Rider Owned

Dan Gerhard and Jake Heilbron have purchased the brand back from Kent Outdoors, and along with a team of dedicated, experienced Kona employees, are reuniting to keep the Long, Sweet Ride rolling.” – Kona Bikes.

Fair Drop Best UC offset 2-bolt seatpost head, 2° slacker MTB seattube angle

What does this mean for Kona Bikes?

The last few years at Kona have been a little bumpy. This purchase brings much-needed stability and vision to the icon off-road company. Kona expressed its new vision via a press release to the industry. 

With this return to being rider-owned and operated, we’re doubling down on our unique brand legacy and returning to some basics. 

kona process x alloy frame eurobike 2023 tito tomassi

What does this mean for Kona dealers?

Currently, Kona has nearly 1,000 North American and European dealers in its network. They are now making the current dealers the highest priority. This concentration on dealers also means Kona will pause D2C bike sales for the time being. The newly updated Kona site will show these changes immediately, as will its social and communication channels. The Kona team kindly says, “Bear with us, and we will keep you informed as we move through this transition.”

Kona Ouroboros supreme

Bike Inventory

On the bike side, new Kona inventory is headed to the Kona warehouse and distributors alongside the freshly released Kona Ouroboros. Kona has been working on some new models, so keep an eye out. 

Kona Sutra, SF, bridge

How will this affect pricing? 

Kona explains, “Private ownership allows us to be more streamlined, more flexible, and quicker on our feet. This, combined with the support of our suppliers, means we can deliver high-quality bikes in a distinctly Kona flavor at super attractive prices. We’ll never do a BOGO Sale again, so don’t ask, but we promise to offer good value for good money, always.”

For now, the Kona offices in Ferndale, WA, and North Vancouver, BC, will continue to proudly anchor the brand. 

Welcome back to the smallest, biggest bike company in the world.

Konaworld.com

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Jason DW
Jason DW
22 days ago

I hope it all works out for kona

jdog
jdog
22 days ago

Some say that all press is good press. KONA has a lot of press. Best of luck. I’d love to hear the story of the numbers of these transactions. Seems that Kent saw the covid bike boom and got greedy. You win some you lose some. I assume this is the latter?

TheKaiser
TheKaiser
22 days ago
Reply to  jdog

Yeah, ditto on wanting to see the numbers here. If it was truly a Covid Boom driven sale, followed by a hemorraging cash, verge of bankruptcy buyback, I could imagine the founders may have bought it back for .10 on the dollar, but really would like to see the details.

qillie
qillie
22 days ago

good on them. i wish them well.

seraph
21 days ago

Man, do you guys ever proof read your content? “Now making them the highest priority” is a sentence fragment, and “Kona has been working on some new models as we have, so keep an eye out” just makes no sense considering the previous sentence.

Ashok Captain
Ashok Captain
21 days ago

Y.A.Y. Long may they cyclocross

King County
King County
21 days ago

I wish them the best. The original owners getting back the brand shows real passion. There are a lot of companies out there, but K had some interesting models. I always wanted a MinUte.

Dave
Dave
20 days ago

Except to my understanding they fired all of the outside rep force. And those people had to deal with all the Kent crap for the past year and a half. Not a nice move at all.

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