Homegrown bike brand Bicicletta gets new lease on life

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      Bikers rejoice: premium cycling brand Bicicletta is back from the brink. A Vancouver collective of cycling enthusiasts, CSL Sports, has announced they’ve bought the embattled but beloved company.

      Bicicletta has had a turbulent time recently. Originally opened in 1984, the brand has been serving Vancouver’s cyclists with high-quality stuff for decades. 

      While the brand expanded successfully during the pandemic with its top-of-the-line gear, it hit rockier seas in 2022. The company had filed for creditor protection earlier this summer, owing over $6.4 million to various lenders.

      Its East Vancouver storefront, La Bicicletta, also shuttered earlier this year. 

      “It was clear to us that Bicicletta was an iconic mainstay in the community and thanks to a successful digital transition during the pandemic it had built a national following,” says Alex Concioni, chairman of CSL’s board, in a press release. “We believe that together we can restore the brand’s heritage and are looking forward to the challenge.”

      CSL’s top brass are Conconi, Malcolm Steenburgh, and Taylor Little, all Vancouver-based entrepreneurs and long-time cyclists. They’re also backed by former pro cyclists Ryan Anderson and Rob Britton, and Tiny’s Andrew Wilkinson (who, full disclosure, owns Overstory Media, which owns the Straight). 

      The press release confirms that the current staff of Bicicletta will all be staying on, as will the existing name and web domain. 

      “We wish to move beyond the stereotype that only hardcore racers can appreciate a premium experience, and seek to open our doors to the larger community of passionate cyclists who engage with the sport in their own way,” says Steenburgh in the release. 

      And there are plans to open another physical store, with a new space in East Van in the works and set to be announced soon.