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Mountain Cycle President issues statement

Posted by on March 31st, 2006 at 1:32 pm

Michael Chen, president of Mountain Cycle and board member of parent-company Kinesis, has just released the first official statement regarding the local layoffs and shutdown of Mountain Cycle.

Chen’s statement refers to the move to completely dissolve the brand’s Portland presence as “trimming the fat” and he places blame squarely on the brand’s management. Here’s an excerpt from the press release (full PDF version):

“This restructuring was necessary to refocus the Mountain Cycle brand on its core business: freeride and extreme terrain bicycles.

…the management team in charge of advancing the brand strayed from the company’s core values and products. After a string of misguided niche-market introductions like our road and cyclocross frames, Mountain Cycle’s core customer didn’t recognize the brand any more.”

Wow. I thought their cyclocross frame was actually one of their bright spots. I also think this statement shows a complete lack of integrity by Chen and just rubs salt in the wounds of the laid-off Portland staff. I hope this is the last we hear of Kinesis, we’re better off without them.

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Patrick March 31, 2006 at 2:14 pm

    Well said, Jonathan!!!

    I’m pretty sure the Stumptown was their number 1 seller!!

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  • Captain Crunk March 31, 2006 at 3:12 pm

    I encourage lots of anti-asian manufacturing graffiti on the side of the Kinesis building!
    (3808 N. Williams)
    I hope the next boatload of Tiawanese crap sinks to the bottom of the ocean!

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  • Wyatt March 31, 2006 at 4:09 pm


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  • Chriss Pagani March 31, 2006 at 6:24 pm

    And I thought I was this blog’s resident hothead! 🙂 I don’t agree with Captain Crunk on the graffiti thing. However, if they all died of bird flu I wouldn’t feel too awful about it.

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  • PDX Rippa March 31, 2006 at 6:31 pm

    Right on Jonathan, you certainly saw right through the BS! That press release, if you can call it that, is so far off base it’s not even funny. Kinesis is scrambling to cover up their mad mismanagement and extremely unprofessional actions.

    The current (well, ex now) staff at Mountain Cycle (I know them all personally) were turning things around and creating a lot of excitement about the brand again. They had many good things planned and in process.

    Then Kinesis says thank you by stabbing them all in the back and giving them 1 day notices. To top it off, they then straight out lie to the media, industry and public about everything and pretend the company just “restructured”. It’s obvious that Kinesis suffers from very poor management and this Chen guy thinks he can pull one over on everyone. I say get the heck out of Portland, Kinesis… we don’t want your kind here!!

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  • Stumptown April 3, 2006 at 11:02 am

    What a scummy press release. Yowza.

    Maybe you can picket Chen at his house, which according to public records is at 4625 NW Ssilverleaf Dr.

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  • Jake April 3, 2006 at 11:37 am

    All the above responses sound great, except the one about the Stumptown being MC’s big seller. Truth is I’d be surprised if thirty frames in total have been sold, which is why the MC staff thought the whole Specialized thing was so funny.

    I hear that the former MC employees like it when people buy them beers.

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  • joshua April 3, 2006 at 11:44 am

    joshua here from cyclepath. the stumptown was indeed the hottest thing going at MC this year and last. so far we’ve sold 50 stumptowns out of our little shop in the northeast alone. all those sold and i see plenty around town that i didnt sell. when chen threw in the towel, we bought every single last one of them and havent seen a decline in sales. stumptown!!

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  • Redsdisease April 5, 2006 at 9:55 pm

    What a scum bag. I don’t agree with picketing outside of the man’s house (seems a bit too personal), but i think that we (the Portland bike community) need to make it clear that Kinesis is not welcome in Portland. This kind of B.S. just makes me sick.

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  • Jeremy April 5, 2006 at 10:02 pm

    It would be great to see MC stay in the hands of a purist and stay in the northwest. I’m proud to be an owner of a couple fine mountain cysles and am glad I got to chance to meet the guys behind the company at Crankworks last summer. Hopefully the new owners will realize what a great bunch of employees they have and bring them all back.
    I’m raising a glass to the soul behind MC.
    Vancouver, BC

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  • Stephen April 6, 2006 at 1:22 pm

    Two weeks after an employee was laid off from Kinesis he tragically died leaving a widow and two childen with nothing. A card was passed around the shop and people would put whatever they could to donate for the funeral cost. Michael Chen refused even to sign the card. I know as an ex kinesis employee, as well as being a frame builder for co-motion and bike friday that the mismanagement was directly related to Michael Chen’s inability to handle and adapt to building frames and running a bussiness in the united states. His mentality is that of the chinese production factory supervisor and he treats his customers the same as he treats his employees. there were many great companies that would use kinesis usa to build their frames Santa Cruz, Bianchi, Voodoo etc. but after a short relationship with kinesis and Michael Chen inevitably they would go to someone who would treat them like a customer. F@%# you Michael Chen go back to China!!

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  • Eric April 11, 2006 at 12:28 pm

    We still have Sapa and Ellsworth.

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  • […] I have just gotten official word from Kinesis USA President Michael Chen that Mountain Cycle has been sold. I don’t have many confirmed details yet (rumors abound), but I expect to hear more from Chen very soon. As most of you already know, Kinesis USA (parent company of Mountain Cycle) shut down the North Portland based company back in March and issued this press statement justifying their decision. […]

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  • SKiDmark June 27, 2006 at 11:57 pm

    That’s funny! Road and Cyclocross are “niche markets”. History tells me it’s the other way around.

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