Britain’s best bike trade
The patents for Synchro Shift gears – which operate the front
and rech mechs with one twist-grip – were bought by Shimano at yesterday’s auction
for $232 000.
This was revealed this morning on the BikeEurope website, www.bike-eu.com.
Shimano was the only bidder.
“We spoke with several component manufacturers over the
past few months, but Shimano was the one to make the final offer,” former EGS
president and founder Christian Gauthier told BikeEurope, and reflected on the irony
of a competitor taking over all of its innovations at a bargain price.
Gauthier added that the former EGS team was infected with melancholy after the auction.
“But I told them this was a positive thing for the company because it justifies
all the hard work we have put into developing innovative products.”
Shimano’s European PR officer Xavier Nicolas, told BikeEurope: “We bought the
entire patent package basically because the auctioneers didn’t give us any other
choice. It was everything or nothing. In the end we think we got a pretty good deal.”
Asked whether Shimano bought the patents simply to avoid them falling into the hands
of potential competitors, Nicolas said: “We wouldn’t have bought them if we
didn’t want to use them. Yet since the purchase was only yesterday, we have yet to
decide on a clear-cut plan as to what we are going to do with them.”