Cannondale Bicycle Corporation

The Cannondale Bicycle Corporation, is an American division of Canadian conglomerate Dorel Industries that supplies bicycles. It is headquartered in Bethel, Connecticut with manufacturing and assembly facilities in China and Taichung, Taiwan. The company was founded in 1971 by Joe Montgomery, Jim Catrambone and Ron Davis to manufacture backpacks and bags for camping and later bicycle trailers for bicycle touring. One of the most successful products was the Bugger, a child trailer, although Cannondale's marketing department seemed unaware of the connotations of the name in British English (some were, nevertheless, exported to the UK). Today, Cannondale produces many different types of high-end bicycles, few of which are handmade in USA, specializing in aluminum (rather than steel or titanium) and carbon fiber frames, a technology in which they were pioneers. The name of the company was taken from the Cannondale Metro North train station in Wilton, Connecticut. In the late 1990s Cannondale attempted to move into the motorsports business, producing a line of off-road motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles. According to an interview with Cannondale Communications Director, Tom Armstrong, the company was unable to drive down the cost of their motor vehicles fast enough. Sales took off when the company was still losing money on each motorbike they shipped. This gap drove the company to seek bankruptcy protection in 2003, and to sell off the motorsport division. Cannondale's bicycle division was purchased in 2003 by Pegasus Capital Advisors, which supported the company's renewed focus on bicycle production. In February 2008, Cannondale was purchased from Pegasus Capital Advisors by Dorel Industries. In Apri 2009 it was announced that all production would be transferred to Taiwan. [edit]Ownership Originally a privately held company, Cannondale became a $22 million IPO in 1995. The business continued as a publicly traded company until declaring bankruptcy on January 29, 2003. Cannondale's full assets were then purchased at auction by Pegasus Partners II, L.P. The motor-sports IP, manufacturing equipment and inventory were quickly sold off as the company returned its focus to bicycle manufacture. In February 2008, Dorel Industries, a Canada based diversified consumer products company, announced the purchase of Cannondale from Pegasus for approximately $200 million. Dorel also owns Pacific Cycle which is a distributor of bicycles made in Taiwan and the People's Republic of China for sale under many historic U.S. cycle brands, including Schwinn, Mongoose, Roadmaster, and GT. [edit]Products [edit]Bicycle Frames Cannondale began manufacturing aluminum racing and touring frames in 1983, with mountain bike frames added later. The earlier models sported oversized aluminum tubes for increased stiffness, resulting in frames that were super-stiff and super-efficient. Later, carbon fiber composite frames were developed. Cannondale's bicycle frame components were made in its factory in Bedford, Pennsylvania, but are now made in factories in Taiwan and Vietnam depending on the model of bike. In 2009, Dorel Industries said that it was moving all of Cannondale's bicycle manufacturing to a new plant in Taichung, Taiwan by the end of 2010. Some non-bicycle manufacturing jobs will remain in Bedford, including final assembly and testing. A new customer service call center is planned in Bedford, as well.