Colnago’s UK distributor has confirmed the brand is not moving to a direct-to-consumer model, following concerns (opens in a new tab) after the launch of its new C68 range.
The Colnago C68 family – made up of road, gravel and all-terrain frames – has been rolled out with the option for customers in select European countries to purchase a special edition package, directly from Colngago, in an offer ” omnichannel”.
This limited-edition custom purchase comes with a non-fungible token (NFT), as well as an NC label on the top tube that provides a “digital passport” and opens the owner to “exclusive and official events.”
Cycling Industry News referred to “trade concerns over other direct offerings”.
Talk to weekly cyclingWindwave Chief Commercial Officer Luke Leuillette said, “Colnago is still 100% behind the distribution model with resellers in key countries.
“The only product available to order via web/app is the custom color configuration NFT product – only as a complete bike and in the unique NFT color combination to customers’ taste.”
He added: “Customers wishing to purchase a custom color NFT complete bike and take advantage of the ‘white glove delivery service’ will of course pay an additional premium for this. This offer comes with the Scion custom bike luggage for transport. , personalized Colnago x Castelli Clothing and delivery delivery to your home.”
Leuillette has confirmed that the C68 in standard/stock colours, as a frame or as a bike, is not available direct from Colnago and can be purchased through a local Colnago retailer in the UK only.
The direct-only method – previously the pursuit of a few select brands such as Canyon and Ribble – has become more widespread in recent years and is causing concern among resellers who understandably fear being left out of the buying journey.
Specialized was one of the biggest brands named to join the trend in February this year, now offers the ability for customers to purchase bikes online from its own website and have them shipped directly to their doorstep.
At the time, it said weekly cycling that it had invested heavily in service, hiring additional staff to provide customer service that could be lacking without in-store guidance. It was also reported that dealers would receive 50-75% of Specialized’s markup if they were involved in storing or assembling the bike.
In response to this change, Specialized has also updated its warranty process, allowing riders to access support from any dealer – with the dealer being credited for labor.