Summary of our market study

The global bicycle market is projected to experience a steady growth rate of 2.4% annually from 2020 to 2027, with Asia, particularly China, driving much of the demand with an expected CAGR of 4.7%. The French bicycle market reflects this positive trend, witnessing a dynamic surge especially in the electrically assisted bicycle (EAB) segment; overall, the sector’s sales rose by 10.1%. The market is increasingly structured with major retailers and brands establishing a strong presence across the value chain. After an initial impact due to confinement measures, the bicycle market rebounded quickly, with demands soaring post-crisis, supported by government and local authority initiatives promoting cycling in urban areas.

In terms of consumer behavior, the majority of French cyclists preferred mountain bikes and VTCs, while e-bikes are on a rising trend. Specialty retailers and multisport stores lead the distribution channels, but online sales are also growing. The European Union, especially Italy and the Netherlands, comprises the main trade partners for France. Despite the challenges posed by COVID-19, which hit specialized retailers and repair shops hard, the sector saw a dramatic increase in new bicycle sales post-lockdown, aided by government incentives and urban infrastructure improvements favoring cycling.

The Robust Growth of France's Bicycle Market and Surging Consumer

Interest France's bicycle market displays a dynamic and positive trajectory, capitalizing on the surging demand for various bicycle types, particularly the noteworthy rise in electrically assisted bicycles (EABs). The growth is illustrated by a substantial 10.1% increase in sector sales in 2019 alone, signaling a trend towards environmentally friendly and sustainable personal transportation.

Consumers in France exhibit a preference for a diverse range of bicycles, with mountain biking and VTC (Vélo Tout Chemin, or all-terrain bikes) capturing the interest of over 70% of respondents in the 2018 Bicycle Tourism Observatory. Interestingly, the taste for road bikes also remains strong, engaging nearly half of the participants in the study. When it comes to acquiring a new bicycle, the French seem to be willing to invest a significant amount, with the average purchase exceeding 1,000 euros. Regular renewal cycles are observed, with around 45% of owners renewing their bicycles roughly every five years.

Specialty bike shops are the go-to choice for most buyers, especially those who hold licenses, with such shops accounting for 78% of their preference. Accessories and technology are integral to the biking experience, and French consumers are spending on average around 180 euros on equipment. Clothing, shoes, and accessories dominate the purchases, while GPS and mobile application usage for cycling reflects a growing trend toward digital navigation aids. The distribution of bicycle sales conveys a mixed landscape with specialist retailers and multisport stores leading the market channels. In 2020, these outlets experienced notable growth, alongside supermarkets and online sales platforms.

Concerning regulations, the French and EU framework ensure stringent safety standards that govern the production and distribution of bicycles, assuring that quality and safety meet expectations. The market also faces regulation adjustments, such as the decree of March 29, 2016, which fine-tuned the assembly and adjustment obligations for vendors.

Segmentation in the market is evident with various actors positioning themselves across different sales figures, from dedicated production plants to multisport brands and specialized retailers. These entities cater to the distinct segments of consumers, ranging from the high-end market to the rapidly expanding electric bike niche. The global context seems promising despite the setbacks of the Covid-19 pandemic, with the world market poised for steady growth between 2020 and 2027.

The French market is reflective of this resilience, with robust growth achieved despite a pandemic-induced slump, and a fast recovery as soon as restrictions.

Key Players Shaping the French Bicycle Market Landscape

The French bicycle market, a dynamic and growing sector, features notable players that are central to its current structure and upcoming prospects. Among these market actors, several companies stand out based on their contributions to the industry, whether it is through manufacturing, assembly, or retail.

  • La Manufacture du Cycle emerges as a prominent entity, being part of the Intersport group since 2013. As one of the chief assembly sites, this company significantly influences the market with its production capacity, assembling more than 400,000 bicycles. Its success demonstrates the vested interest and competency in catering to a substantial segment of the cycling population in France.
  • Decathlon, through its B'Twin Village located in Hellemes (59), is another major contributor to the French bicycle sector. Known for championing accessible sports through a variety of retail products, Decathlon's assembly site for bicycles taps into efficient production mechanisms. By compiling over 150 imported components, this site manages to produce close to 200,000 bicycles a year, serving a diverse customer base ranging from amateur enthusiasts to more serious cyclists.

While these manufacturers hold a significant place in terms of production, the market also sees a variety of specialized retailers who add value to the customer experience with their expertise and specific product offerings.

  • Cyclable, noted for its specialty stores, provides customers with tailored solutions and high-quality bicycles, including electric bikes, which have seen surging popularity.
  • Yet another unique participant is Altermove, carving a niche in the electric bike segment. As the electric bicycle grows in demand, companies like Altermove become increasingly vital in meeting the new consumer trends, providing specialized products that align with the global move towards sustainable transportation.

The French bicycle market, thus, is marked by a combination of large-scale producers like La Manufacture du Cycle and B'Twin Village and specialty retailers like Cyclable and Altermove. These players, with their distinct roles in production, assembly, and retail, contribute to a market that is rich in diversity and primed for future growth, driven by evolving consumer demands and a collective push for eco-friendly mobility solutions.

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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of the study

A bicycle is a human-powered land vehicle that is classified as a cycle and has two in-line wheels, which give it its name. The driving force is provided by its driver, usually in a seated position, through two pedals driving the rear wheel by a roller chain. There are several types of bicycles, the best known of which are: Dutch bikes, mountain bikes, mountain bikes (VTC), folding bikes, cargo bikes and road bikes.

The global bicycle market is expected to grow at a steady rate of 2.4% per year between 2020 and 2027 . This demand is driven by Asia, which generates 20% of global sales, and mainly China, which is expected to experience a CAGR of 4.7% over the same period.

In France, the market is very dynamic, and is benefiting from the explosion in demand for EABs (electrically assisted bicycles), so the sector's sales increased by 10.1% in 2019. EABs have been the subject of a specific Businesscoot study available here.

The French market is in the process of being structured, with major multisport retailers integrated at all levels of the value chain, brands that are flourishing in cities thanks to the French market is in the process of being structured, with major multisport retailers integrated at all levels of the value chain, brands that are flourishing in cities thanks to the development of franchises, production companies that are focusing on high-end products to attract a public of enthusiasts, and lastly, companies that are trying to carve out a place for themselves in the booming electric bike niche.

If the confinement broke the market dynamics, the upward trend then recovered very quickly, with an explosion of demand after the crisis. This momentum is fueled by the government and local authorities in charge of developing urban space to allow this means of transport to expand.

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Breakdown of bicycle equipment purchases (excluding bicycles)
  • Where do you buy your bike?
  • Breakdown and growth of bicycle sales (1,925 million euros), by distribution channel
  • Breakdown and growth in bicycle sales volumes by distribution channel
  • Breakdown of bicycle parts and accessories sales by distribution channel, and sales growth by segment
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Latest news

Moustache Bikes moves electric frame production to the Vosges region - 09/09/2023
  • Moustache Bikes launches its new J model on September 6.
  • This electric bike is the company's first with a frame designed and manufactured entirely in France.
  • Moustache Bikes has worked with three other French companies to design the bike: Elcam Usinage in Poligny (Jura), Fonderies du Midi in Vitrolles (Bouches-du-Rhône) and Colibru in Schirmeck (Bas-Rhin).
Moustache launches an electric bicycle entirely made in France - 06/09/2023
  • Moustache started in the world of electric bikes 10 years ago.
  • It is the French leader in the high-end electric bike segment.
  • The new model won a Gold Award at the Eurobike show.
  • The bikes sell for between €5,200 and €6,800.
  • Moustache aims to reach sales of €130 million by 2022, an increase of 30%.
  • Network of 600 retailers.
  • Almost half of the around 7,000 bikes sold each year are exported to Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Moustache Bikes resuscitates the French bicycle industry - 06/09/2023
  • Moustache Bikes has launched a new high-end product, the "J".
  • Most industrial bicycle frames come from China or Taiwan.
  • It has been some forty years since bicycle frames have been manufactured on an industrial scale in France.
  • It has taken the Moustache Bikes team and its partners three years to bring back this know-how.
  • The bikes are assembled entirely in Thaon-les-Vosges.
  • Eleven years after its creation, Moustache Bikes has reached sales of 130 million euros in 2022 and employs nearly 150 people.
Lapierre cycles no longer want to ride alone - 21/07/2023
  • The Accell group, to which Lapierre belongs, came under the control of the KKR investment fund in mid-2022.
  • The opening of a store in Besançon by the managers of Cycles Brun took place in March 2021, it was the brand's second outlet in France after the one in Dijon, operated directly by Lapierre since 2017.
  • Lapierre offers certain retailers the opportunity to open Lapierre spaces in their stores, along with Winora and Haibike.
  • Between 25 and 30 stores in France already offer these 3 brands.
  • In 2020, Lapierre's sales rose by 55% to 115 million euros, and operating profit was 1.8 million euros.
  • Half of Lapierre's sales are exported.
Angell strengthens its position in the electric bike market - 03/07/2023
  • Angell will supply the first electric bicycles for the Mini (BMW) automotive brand during the winter of 2023-2024.
  • The partnership between Angell and the BMW Group is signed for a period of at least 5 years.
  • The bikes will be manufactured in France by the Seb Group.
  • At present, the plant's capacity is to produce around a hundred bikes a day.
  • Angell intends to step up the pace of innovation, launching a bike every six months.
  • Angell has signed an R&D partnership with the Kiska group in the summer of 2022.
  • Angell will diversify its distribution with physical outlets, targeting a network of some 50 retailers located in major cities in France and Europe.
  • The brand has conducted a pilot in five outlets (three in France, one in Spain and one in Italy).
  • Angell plans to roll out its omnichannel strategy across Europe, starting with Germany, Spain and Italy.
  • Angell employs around fifty people.
  • The brand forecasts 100% growth in 2023 compared with 2022. A total of 5,000 Angell bikes have been sold in two years.
Intersport to the rescue of Go Sport - 08/06/2023
  • Intersport takes over 72 Go Sport stores
  • 1,446 employees taken over out of 1,574
  • 50 Go Sport stores will become Intersport
  • 22 Go Sport stores to remain Go Sport
  • Target: 250 new Go Sport stores by 2030
  • Target sales: over €650 million
  • Intersport - 800 Intersport stores
  • Intersport sales in 2022: 3.3 billion euros
  • Intersport target with the arrival of Go Sport: 4.4 billion euros
  • Decathlon sales: 4.5 billion euros

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Velo Electrique
Go Sport France
Altermove (Mobivia Groupe)
MFC La manufacture française du cycle (Intersport Groupe Sunn)
Fifteen (Mobivia)
Angell Bike (Zebra)

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