Year-End 2019 Updates
What a year! 2019 will go down as the largest single year gain in sales volume on record. The Voltaire Cycles pilot store in Verona New Jersey is on the precipice of posting a >100% gain over the previous year’s sales revenue. For the first time in its history, the little 980 sq ft. store exceeded 1 million in gross sales. This new reality has prompted many of us to ask what's changed from previous years' record sales?
We believe we've identified at least 3 areas of change which has prompted this year's unprecedented surge. Specifically: State legislation in our home state passed in early May of this year legalizing the sales and use of light-electric vehicles along all public roadways where bicycles are permitted; 2. A much more favorable opinion of personal electric vehicles by community leaders, planners, and commuters; 3. Our newly expanded product catalog which now includes complete replacement parts and accessories for our biggest brand sellers. The Voltaire Cycles catalog is the most comprehensive catalog for LEV to date and attracts 10s of thousands of visitors each week. You can visit the pilot shop's website at www.electricspokes.com to gain a new perspective on how our catalog is expanding.
Year 2020 will undoubtedly begin where 2019 left-off. Colorado’s first Voltaire Cycles franchise is in the final stages of build-out and will be open by the 2nd or 3rd week of January. In spite of the store’s building delays (due to an unusual backup of permit requests at the municipal building department), their Voltaire Cycles website has been attracting visitors far and wide and has also made a few big-ticket item sales.
We are extremely excited to announce the addition of our first Oregon franchise which is slated to open sometime in the second quarter of 2020. The new owner is scouting property locations in his hometown of Bend - which is a mecca for outdoor adventuring fun. A big focus of this new Voltaire Cycles franchise will be on the high-powered off-roading vehicle market. We are extremely excited to be experimenting on some of the upper limits of power and speed and how that might play on our catalog of vehicles and resources.
With the continued presence of PEVs at all levels of community transit, we’ve seen a marked increase in police department interest – either in purchasing their own vehicles for patrol duties, or in discussing strategic partnerships. Several municipalities here in New Jersey have adopted the e-scooter as their principal neighbor patrolling vehicle. This has prompted us to look at newer suppliers for accessories and replacement parts which will eventually become necessary in order to support municipal fleets of these vehicles. Website visitor traffic and phone calls from municipalities submitting RFPs has increased dramatically in the last quarter of 2019. This market could become a goldmine for franchise owners if they so choose.
So put on your riding gear, buckle up that helmet, and prepare yourself for a ride of a lifetime. Voltaire Cycles is carving itself a large piece of the pie in this new era of micro-mobility. I know from personal experience that nothing good or worth having comes without considerable cost and a lot of hard work. Each Voltaire Cycles Franchise has the potential to develop into a mega-store generating millions in revenue for its owners. But attaining this holy grail of business goals will often test you in ways you would never expect. It’s usually that way with any venture.
I chose this path – for the adventure; for the thrill of the hunt; for the extreme highs and the occasional lows; for the endless parade of problems that plague any business; for the high-fives and giant grins; and for each new partnership that develops around each corner. Being a part of a new industry, helping riders achieve better health while contributing to a more sustainable future makes this journey almost too good to be true.
Stay true to your vision, don’t let any setback completely derail your quest, and keep reaching for that holy grail – whatever that grail may represent.
Ride on, Ride fast, Ride free,
P.S. To learn more about Voltaire Cycles Franchise offerings, visit us at www.voltairefranchises.com