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QBP to be Exclusive U.S. Distributor for Michelin Tires in 2016

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Michelin Pro 4 28mm  (1)

If you run a shop in the U.S., you’ll have to ring up QBP for Michelin tires in 2016. Recently named the exclusive U.S. distributor for the coming year, Michelin hopes that QBP’s impressive distributing reach nation wide will help bolster the sales of their tires. For years Quality Bicycle Products has been one of many places dealers could get Michelin tires but that appears to be going away, effective January 1…

From Michelin:

GREENVILLE, S.C., Dec. 28, 2015 – Michelin North America’s bicycle tire unit has announced that Quality Bicycle Products (QBP) will serve as the exclusive distributor for its products in the United States.

Michelin selected QBP for the strategic relationship because of the distributor’s vast experience in working with cycling retailers of all sizes, including its specialization with independently owned bike shops.

“QBP shares many common values with Michelin. We believe the distribution relationship will improve Michelin’s access to the independent dealer network and large retailers alike. QBP’s clear focus on our products will help re-establish the Michelin brand in the bicycle business with its unparalleled support of the retail channels across the board,” said Tim Saunders, North American sales manager, Michelin Bicycle Tires.

“We could not be more excited about being Michelin’s exclusive U.S. distributor,” said Rich Tauer, QBP President. “QBP and Michelin have worked together for several years in a multi-distributor environment and now a single distributor arrangement will allow Michelin to reinforce its specialty brand status in the retail bike channel. QBP will work with Michelin to develop a national brand strategy focusing on the specialty bike retailer. This approach will also allow specialty bike retailers to stock, promote, and sell Michelin tires with confidence in the brand’s value and profitability. It’s our belief that Michelin is a complete specialty brand that serves both the front and back of the bike shop with top quality products.”

This exclusive partnership is effective January 1, 2016.

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WV Cycling
WV Cycling
7 years ago

Not knowing the history very well, isn’t this similar to what Shimano did recently?

MannyCalavera
MannyCalavera
7 years ago

QBP is throwing their weight around a lot these days and their exclusive brand monopolies should draw the concern of bike shop owners. Still, Michelin is little thought of in the bike tire world; I am sure that having Quality pushing their product in their machine will result in more sales than otherwise.

parkcyc
parkcyc
7 years ago

So incredibly tired of seeing QBP sucking everything up.
They are horrible to deal with. Been a dealer with QBP since 94′. Always out of things and always a pain when it came to problems.
They have so many things you can only get there now and it’s very frustrating. Wish some other people would have things.
Another brand I won’t have access to now. I try not to buy form them.

scissorhands
scissorhands
7 years ago

WOW…..Alot of hate here…I can not think of another distributor in the U.S. that has as much to offer as QBP. They are all about the IBD. I find they have fantastic fill rates, great programs, and the most generous shipping incentives in the industry. Plus with multiple warehouse, parts are usually two days away. It seems to me that companies want to align themselves with QBP for these very reasons.

Kernel Flickitov
Kernel Flickitov
7 years ago

Low risk for QBP, if Michelin goes well in the NA market like they did in the 90’s Q hits yet another jackpot. If it flops Q dumps inventory on the grey market that undercuts every shop with an account there and still takes profit just because of the sheer volume they deal with. Every distro does this but will never admit it. QBP, J&B, SBS, Hawley, BRG, Cyclone, and on and on.

Dave
Dave
7 years ago

How will QBP handle domestic sites like biketiresdirect.com and also international like Wiggle, Chain Reaction Pro Bike Kit?

Another big concern (not saying that QBP does this) is with fewer and fewer distributors to get things thru will you be forced to buy almost exclusively thru QBP to get good pricing? Then each year they ask for more and more just like Trek, Specialized, Giant, etc

Not saying that QBP would do this but I am sure that many Trek, Specialized, and Giant dealers didn’t expect the unrealistic expectations put upon them when they started with those companies either.

Just my 2 cents.

myke
myke
7 years ago

Hating a company because its competitive….. everyone of the commenters above would try cut the same deal

Moar Cowbell
Moar Cowbell
7 years ago

Sorry retailers, and there go your margins on Michelin in 3,2,1. Oh, but they will tell you how their higher prices are offset because of their excellent service.

Sorry, your service doesnt pay retail shop payroll and rent.

John
John
7 years ago

@myke: Exclusive distribution agreements are, by their very definition, anti-competitive.

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
7 years ago

Moar…at most, it’ll be $3-4 more per tire, maybe $0.25 for cheaper tires. Plus you get the shipping benefits from QBP. They also give quantity discounts for most things. If sales go up, Michelin may even be able to drop their already good prices.

BB NYC
BB NYC
7 years ago

I think most of these comments may be misdirected…
QBP should not be looked down on for becoming a successful business. They’ve scaled and have become a go-to for many in the industry when small items and even bigger parts are needed. Of course it would be great if every company and shop “stayed small” and kept their “authenticity”… however just because they have grown to be the biggest in the US it shouldn’t make them a target. Bottom line, few brands give back as much as they do, and have worked as tirelessly to help LBS fight against grey market and online sellers… as a distributor they are tied to the success for the LBS and should be seen as partners. So what that 2-3 points are added to the cost, it’s easy, accountable and delivered at very reasonable shipping timelines. Too many times have I heard of smaller distributors selling to the likes of catalog sellers and that’s where shops suffer… when Excel or CC.com sell parts at 30% off…

Myke
Myke
7 years ago

@John the agreement is made between two parties. I the goal is improve says. Usually deals work to benefit the consumer because the costs can much lower dealing directly with one person for distribution. You can actually see more losses in a multi distribution model because some will do loss leaders which impacts everyone. Selling something at the lowest price is not always a good idea. Everything cost more these and tires are much more. So instead of thinking about bottom line prices. Think about you want to the guy selling with zero margins or want the playing fields more level….

Eric Hansen
Eric Hansen
7 years ago

QBP is by far the best distributor to use if you know exactly what you need, but have NO IDEA who makes a thing like that, or if it exists. Runner up: J&B.

Moar Cowbell
Moar Cowbell
7 years ago

BB NYC – If you believe that, keep drinking the kool-aid. They talk brick and mortar shops out of one corner of their mouth, but happily keep those lucrative $5m mailorder accounts open all day long

Xmus Jaxon Flaxon Waxon
Xmus Jaxon Flaxon Waxon
7 years ago

. . .and turn their backs on the very small Utah city (Marriot-Slaterville) who bent over backward to help them grow. M-S built the QBP building (directly abutting the Ogden city limits, likely because M-S was even more desperate for business revenue) from scratch for them only a few years ago, and yet it’ll be abandoned soon, if it isn’t already. Jobs gone, land wasted, (not that that particular spot was much before QBP), time wasted. Thanks, Mr Flagg. (deleted)

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