Canyon supplies some major pro teams with bikes, including Katusha, but its system of supplying its own customers has collapsed leading to a corporate nightmare.
Having been beset with problems that have seen its reputation shredded in recent months, the chief executive of Canyon bikes has issued a grovelling apology in an open letter to customers.
Roman Arnold, who leads the company and is also its founder, also revealed how a new strategy to improve delivery of its bikes ordered online globally spectacularly back fired.
In outlining what sounds like a corporate disaster that will fill MBA text books in the years to come, he said rather than improve the company it had brought it to a standstill.
The trouble centred on new software introduced to run the dispatch of bikes, which can only be ordered online, all over the world.
The problems have meant some people who ordered bikes, and have already paid for them, as long ago as last September being told they will not receive their purchase until the end of next month.
And while all of the delays have not been as long, a huge percentage of the bike company’s customers have been left furious.
As a result, Canyon’s reputation has taken a battering on social media and bike forums around the world, not to mention in the media.
Here’s Canyon chief executive Roman Arnold’s open letter in full
At Canyon it has always been our goal to build the best bikes. Whether for professional athletes, weekend warriors or first time riders we strive to offer each of you the perfect riding experience.
Over the last few years, the growing demand for our bikes called for a total overhaul of our systems and facilities.
As you will already know, the process of upgrading and transitioning did not go as planned.
Throughout this period of transformation, we failed to deliver the level of service that our company stands for.
We are heartbroken that this has caused many in our community to lose their faith in Canyon. On behalf of the entire Canyon Team, I would once again like to express my deepest and sincerest apologies for this, as well as do my best to explain the situation.
Towards the end of 2015, in response to the rapidly growing demand for our products we took a major step for the future of Canyon. We opened up a brand new, state-of-the-art factory and implemented a new company-wide IT system.
Our goal was to streamline our processes to provide all of our customers around the world a simpler and better experience when buying a Canyon bike.
Unfortunately, at the start, the total opposite occurred. As soon as we began implementing the new system unexpected problems arose. Instead of improving our processes, they were brought to a standstill.
Customer and order information vanished and we subjected many of you to ridiculous delivery times.
On top of that our customer service was ill-equipped to answer the huge number of enquiries quickly, nor could they access the information necessary to give you the answers you needed.
All of these problems, while unintentional, were our responsibility and I deeply regret how many of you have been affected.
As a person who is extremely passionate about riding nothing gets me more excited than the idea of getting a new bike, so I can honestly sympathise with how upset you must be. Your emails, calls and posts have not gone unnoticed, they have been taken to heart.
A new Canyon
Over the last few weeks we have dramatically improved the situation thanks to the sustained effort and commitment from the entire Canyon Crew.
Our new systems perform better with each passing day and our production problems are working themselves out. We have learned a tremendous amount from this experience and are certain that in the future we will be much better prepared for any challenges.
To achieve greater transparency and you all informed on what is happening inside Canyon, we will begin posting regular updates under the News section of our website.
We have learned the hard way that it is not enough to build award-winning bikes, we must also provide the best service possible.
Unfortunately, we can’t do this overnight but we are concerting all our efforts on improving as thoroughly and as quickly as possible.
We have nearly reached the end of this chapter, but a long road still lies ahead of us. We sincerely hope that you will continue to put your trust in us as we move forward towards a brighter future and a better Canyon.
I want to personally thank you for your loyalty and patience. The whole Canyon Crew is giving their best to meet your expectations and we won’t stop working until we do.
Founder & CEO, Canyon Bicycles GmbH