Portlanders head to Vegas for annual trade show

Portland-based Chris King Precision
Components will officially launch their
new bottom bracket at Interbike in Las Vegas
next week.

It’s that time once again when the entire bike industry converges on Las Vegas for the annual Interbike trade show. For many Portlanders, that means a trek out to the desert to cavort with friends and business partners, get the latest on all the hot new products, and revel in pure bike geekdom for a few days.

Here’s what a few Portlanders and one local company will be up to.

The Ohm electric-assist bicycle-1.jpg

Gary says magazine editors are very interested
in this OHM Electric-assist bike.
(Photo © J. Maus)

Northeast Portland resident Gary Medley is an independent public relations consultant. He’ll be at the show representing three of his current clients including Portland-based Castelli USA (who I wrote about yesterday), and OHM Cycles, a Canadian company that will be exhibiting a line of electric-assist bicycles (I tried one out a few weeks ago).

Medley says he’ll spend his time meeting with the media and giving interviews about his client’s products.


River City Bikes owner Dave
Guettler, displaying some of the form he’ll
need for his ride to Las Vegas.

River City Bicycles owner Dave Guettler started his journey to Vegas a bit earlier than most. That’s because he was invited by Specialized Bicycles to join a group of 17 riders for the 600-mile trip from their headquarters in Morgan Hill California. Guettler is one of six retailers on the ride, which will benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a partnership between the breast cancer fighting foundation and Specialized. (More on the ride at BicycleRetailer.com)

“It is my one chance each year to see all my accounts in a focused setting away from their shops and show them what’s new for the next selling season.”
— Michael Kloeppel, Unotache Marketing

Also heading to Interbike is local, independent sales rep Michael Kloeppel. Mike plans to be at Interbike for three days on behalf of his vendors which include pannier maker Ortlieb, lighting company NiteRider, Masi Bicycles, and others.

“The show is vital to my business,” Kloeppel wrote me in an email yesterday, “because it is my one chance each year to see all my accounts in a focused setting away from their shops and show them what’s new for the next selling season.” Mike also says he uses the show to investigate trends and find new business opportunities.

Always looking to do things a bit differently, Northwest Portland’s Chris King Precision Components will make their mark on Interbike outside of the main conventional hall. For the second year in a row, Chris King will only attend the show’s Outdoor Demo (an event prior to the main show where attendees can test-ride bikes at a local riding area).

Chris King’s Marketing Director Chris Distefano says they’ve invited industry friends to a B-B-Q on Monday night. On the business end of things, Chris King will officially announce the release of their long-awaited bottom bracket, new rear hub options, and yet another color for their parts — brown.

Back when I worked more closely in the bike industry (before doing this blog full-time), I would attend Interbike every year. I won’t be there this time around, but I’ll be keeping track of new product coverage on other blogs and I’ve asked a few friends who are going to keep me in the loop if anything amazing is unveiled (I expect commuting bikes to be all the rage). Stay tuned.

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