CHATTANOOGA, TN - American Bicycle Group (ABG) this week announced the sale of the Merlin Metalworks brand to Arkansas-based Competitive Cyclist. A pioneer in the production of hand-crafted titanium frames starting in 1986, Merlin will reach a wider audience at Competitive Cyclist. As part of the sale, ABG will retain the rights to manufacture and sell Merlin products to buyers in the Asian Markets through the year 2012. Brendan Quirk of Competitive Cyclist welcomed the addition of Merlin, saying, "Like many, I fell in love with Merlin in the mid-90's. In my case, I was beating my head against the wall trying to become a real bike racer back then. My racing career stalled out, but I never lost my feelings for the simple elegance and precision of Merlin frames. We look forward to the endeavor of re-creating that magic."
Peter Hurley, CEO of ABG, states: "While Merlin has been a great brand for us, this is a strategic decision to consolidate and apply our focus and capital to two brands, Quintana Roo and Litespeed, that have shown incredible sales momentum in the past year." Hurley continues, "Competitive Cyclist will make a fantastic new home for Merlin by providing greater audience exposure and, at the same time, I'm certain the arrangement will allow us to better serve our QR and Litespeed customers."
Success from the launch of the Litespeed Carbon series and the Quintana Roo CD0.1 product line has produced the best financial performance for ABG since 1998 and prompted additional development capital to expand each of the two brands further.
Along with the sale of the Merlin brand, the addition of both C-Series and titanium Litespeed product to the Competitive Cyclist catalog represent a renewed relationship between ABG and Competitive Cyclist for the 2011 season.