SwiftCarbon opens UK facilities at Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub
In the next phase of the brand’s expansion, SwiftCarbon bikes has recently announced the opening of their new offices at Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub (SSEH) and incorporated a UK limited company. With this strategic move, the brand bolsters its R&D endeavours, collaborating directly with the world-renowned sports research facility. The SwiftCarbon UK team also aims to grow its presence in the UK and to offer customers and their growing network of retailers dedicated support within their hybrid direct-online / retailer sales model.
Founded in 2008 by South African former pro cyclist Mark Blewett, the company was acquired 9 years later, with the new owners aiming to combine the brand’s carbon ‘know-how’ with their robust business networks and strong financial backing to expand their range to a global market. Moving into the Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub sets SwiftCarbon up to push the technological edge required to produce world-leading products.
Situated opposite the iconic Silverstone Circuit in Northamptonshire, SSEH is home to a dedicated open jet, open return cycling-specific wind tunnel for dedicated, intensive aerodynamic sports performance research as well as a smaller wind tunnel for testing materials and components. Other companies within the hub offer material research and highly advanced CFD and 3D scanning and printing facilities. SSEH Managing Director Rob Lewis says “The aim of Silverstone Sports Engineering Hub is to create a unique innovation facility for companies in sports engineering products and services. We are delighted to welcome SwiftCarbon and look forward to working with them to facilitate innovation and product development of their brand.”
Head of product Pierre de Tarde says, “SwiftCarbon has always been about our bikes’ ‘exceptional ride’ and using the technology available to make sure all our bikes have it. Now we are positioned to take this to the next level, and with these facilities we can explore the ideas that till now have only existed on paper. With us being right here, with such close access to the ‘brains trust’ at the SSEH, it closes the gap. It’s that day to day dialogue which is often where the magic happens.”
SwiftCarbon now falls under the parent company S2 Bike Industries stable, which includes the Brazil-based Sense brand that features mountain bike, urban and gravel platforms, including high-end carbon full suspension models and premium eMTBs. CEO Henrique Ribeiro says, “We have seen good support of the brand here so far and are very excited to now have access to such R&D, plus a solid base in the UK to better serve our customers and create new ones. The bike market here is highly developed of course, yet the global figures suggest there is still so much potential, especially in the mountain bike and ebike segments.”
S2 Industries has a wide range of platforms in its stable and SwiftCarbon will access this to add to their carbon road range, expanding their offering to the UK market. Head of marketing Neil Gardiner says, “As our range develops on the road side, we’re really happy to be bringing back mountain bikes. We’ve had success in the MTB realm already — like two national championship titles (Portugal elite, and South Africa under 23) — and in fact our carbon MTB range was the catalyst that led to our collaboration with Sense and ultimately the brand’s acquisition. We’ve shared resources ever since and there’s some next generation thinking that’s gone into the new MTB range, along with the other categories, which feature some nice surprises.” A preview of the all-new range will be shown at The Cycle Show London at Alexandra Palace in April 2021.