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Scott Sports targeting 10x growth in sales in the next three years

With more and more people gravitating towards a healthy lifestyle and opting to buy cycles, Scott Sports sees a paradigm shift in the Indian market and wants to cater to this potent customer base.

Jaymin Shah and Avanti Giro F1

When we think of spending over Rs 1 lakh on a mode of transportation, it is almost always on a combustion engine-powered motorcycle or scooter. Nowadays, people also have the option of going for an environment-friendly EV as well. However, there is one more option to consider – a bicycle. Yes, this two-wheeler has been around for hundreds of years and has always been friendly to the trees around. With the advancement in technologies and a focus on personal fitness as well, there are many high-end options to pick from. Scott Sports is one of the leading names when you think of premium cycles in India. We chat with Jaymin Shah, Managing Director, Scott Sports India to understand how customers have been reacting to their products and if they have been facing any challenges.

Scott cycles

Q) Many customers in India are still apprehensive about spending large amounts on bicycles. How do you justify the cost of a cycle being as much as a motorcycle?

A carbon bicycle starts upwards of Rs 1.75 lakh and goes up to Rs 8.50 lakh. The cycle is designed to weigh less than 8 kg, carrying 100 kg cyclists at speeds over 35kmph. It is a piece of technological innovation that is the future of solo mobility across the world. Indian consumers were apprehensive a decade ago about spending Rs 25,000 on a bicycle but that is no longer the case. The end consumer is smart and knows very well what they pay for and the quality that they expect from premium products including premium bicycles. 

Q) Do you have any community-building programmes and are you planning to start/add any such activities?

We do have various community-building programmes like SCOTT Weekend. This programme includes activities like SCOTT Smart Bike Fit, Bike Service, Test Ride, Breakfast Ride & Tech talks with cyclists These programmes are designed to engage cyclists in a meaningful manner and make cycling more fun and enjoyable for them. We also conduct the Bergamont 25km, 75 km and 100 km challenges which are run in various parts of the country in collaboration with our dealer network. These help cyclists challenge themselves in riding more distances in a phased manner with the added thrill of competing with fellow cyclists 

Q) There has been a push for EVs and we are seeing more and more steps being taken in that direction. How do Scott Sports plan to be a part of this move? Will we see more electric pedal-assisted cycles?

The world is turning towards more sustainable and environmentally friendly ways of living and coexisting with nature. We intend to convey this message and amplify the benefits associated with electric mobility to all potential customers in all the major markets we have. We have been conducting demo rides at a majority of our dealer networks for all customers who are willing to take the plunge into the world of personal mobility powered by electric bicycles. In India, Scott is one of the few bicycle brands to have launched a range of e-bikes as early as 2018. We currently sell close to 300 e-bikes annually and believe that this number can be easily ramped up to 3,000 bikes annually over the next 24-36 months. 

Q) What has been the key demographic of your customers so far. Are you seeing more responses from any specific state or part of India?

Scott Sports brands are all premium brands and are popular among the age group of 25-65. We have a 75-25 split between men and women owners. Our target audiences are highly educated, well-travelled and come from most major metros of the country. However, we see a surge in Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities across the country that have taken to cycling with some serious intent. 

Q) Is the ban on tyre import affecting your company? If yes, how are you battling this challenge, and do you have any plans to deal with the issue more efficiently in the future?

The quality of locally manufactured tyres needs to improve to meet what consumers of high-end bicycles require. Cyclists are forced to import tyres on their own or keep sourcing from all parts of the country depending on stock availability.  This has resulted in this market becoming a sellers’ market which makes it unfair to consumers across the board. As a business, we are working with a couple of brands internationally to make their product available in the country whilst respecting the law of the land. 

Q) You recently introduced more budget-friendly MTBs for kids in India. Do you think that having more budget-friendly options in a price-conscious market like India will be key to getting more customers?

Avanti-Spice-24-MTB

India is a price-sensitive market and the market demands exceptional value for money products. Having a range of products at a more accessible price point will introduce us to new audiences. Also, the riding journey of our customers starts at a young age and it will be crucial for us to be a part of this journey as early as possible in consumer’s life. Eventually, they graduate to more serious riding and demand higher-level equipment as they start enjoying the cycling experience. 

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