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New owners save Mavic, refocus company on rims, hubs and wheels

Mavic Neutral Support Bikes
Mavic Neutral Support Bikes (Image credit: Future)

New owners have been approved for the embattled French wheel maker Mavic, with a court in Grenoble approving the takeover of the Tour de France technical partner by the Bourrelier group.

Formerly Bricorama, the Bourrelier Group specializes in DIY retail, also owning the Gamma and Karwei hardware chains in Belgium and the Netherlands. They beat out 13 other investment groups including one championed by former Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault.

Mavic employees got an unwelcome surprise in May when the company was placed in receivership and it was revealed that a prior sale agreement was bogus. Former parent company Salomon and its main shareholder Amer Sports supposedly sold Mavic to the California investment fund Regent LP in 2018. But somehow the sale went to Delaware-based company M Sports instead. Amer Sports itself was taken over by a Chinese group in 2019

According to France Bleu Pays de Savoie, the new owners will keep 105 of the more than 210 employees across the production site in Saint-Triviers and the research and development sites in Annecy but will pare down the company's focus.

Having expanded from a specialty in wheels to footwear, helmets, apparel, tyres and other accessories, the new owners say they will narrow the focus to rims, hubs and wheels in aluminium and carbon.

"MAVIC needs to regain the aspect of a family-owned enterprise with agile governance and the short, autonomous decision-making circuits it has lacked in recent years, and with a refocus on what has made the brand successful."

The group plan to modernise Mavic's production tooling and continue its efforts in research, development and innovation. But the announcement made no mention on if Mavic would continue its partnership providing neutral service to the Tour de France. The company extended its 40-year agreement with the ASO through 2022 three years ago.