It’s no big secret that a lot of our gear is made in China and Taiwan. For premium and high end items, we can look to Japan, Germany, and Italy. But thanks to their low labor costs and artificially depressed currency, we can enjoy competitive prices and generally acceptable quality from mainland China and Taiwan.
Yet, I noticed that many of their booths at Interbike were virtual ghost towns. All that was missing was some tumbleweeds rolling through. I’m not talking about brand names that we’re already familiar with. Ashima, Infini, Chosen, Leadtec and Yung Fang all had either innovative products, or appeared to be offering what looked like OEM parts for lower end bicycles. But there did not seem to be any interest.
Either they’ve chosen the wrong venue to display their goods, or their target audience was just not in attendance. I can’t imagine a shop owner wanting to partner with a brand that no one has heard of, but I could see a manufacturer or big chain taking an interest in having their own label put on some of these products.
Or is there just no love for the little guys from China and Taiwan?