CrankTank blog image of rocks carefully stacked and balanced in a pool of water.

Our advice to our clients is to manage your brand by keeping a balanced strategy of being fair and mindful of allowing all channels to prosper giving the consumer the possibility to discover, explore, and experience your brand wherever they choose to go. We strive to improve UX via your web store, your Amazon store, and by treating your retail partners with respect and sufficient margins so that everyone wins. While we have seen some heavy handed D2C centric moves by Nike and Specialized, we think this is shortsighted. 

The consumer is fickle, and a balanced approach that allows retailers and brands to succeed will in the end be the most sustainable and successful strategy. Yes, a super strong brand can earn more pure contribution profit margin on D2C, but if retailers move to new upstart or strong #2 brands, in the end you might be helping your competition and hurting your loyal consumers by making choices for them that they really would prefer you not make.

We always have to be mindful that the customer is the boss in the end. Keep the playing field level and drive your brand using proven digital strategies that lift all channels, and you will win in the end.


CrankTank blog image of Ride Concepts mountain bike shoe company tradeshow booth at Eurobike in Frankfurt, Germany.
The Ride Concepts booth was humming at Eurobike!

There was outward jubilation of getting together on a global scale with friends and business leaders from around the world after a 3 year (for most of us) break. There are many cracks forming under the water line of the hull in what has been a wild ride for cycling and eBikes. Inflation has raised the costs of materials, salaries, logistics, and is being borne by the consumer with yet unknown consequences. 

We heard of cancellations, late payments from retailers, improving supply chain predictability and getting back to normal lead times for most components, yet not all is still adding up to headaches for most operations personnel. We have been warning our clients that a hard end to the party is coming, and now the toxic mix of a war, higher interest rates, and a global recession means we will all have to manage cash flow carefully in the coming months. 


CrankTank blog image of dual slalom bike race at Sea Otter Classic with Fox Racing logo flag in the foreground
Fox Racing has been on a roll for 3 years, and the Sea Otter Dual Slalom was awesome!

Congratulations to CEOs Jeff McGuane and Chris Metz on the spectacular merger of Fox Racing and Vista Outdoor! It brings me great pleasure to see successful outcomes from strong leadership and skill with someone that I have watched mature, grow and prosper for decades. It is a pleasure working with the team at Fox Racing, having outstanding products and being one of the best outdoor brands on the planet!


Scott Montgomery

CEO, Founder