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Canadian outfit buys Cannondale

By Matt Pacocha

Liquigas is among the pro teams sponsored by Cannondale.

Liquigas is among the pro teams sponsored by Cannondale.

Photo: Graham Watson

Dorel Industries has bought Cannondale Bicycle Corporation, the corporation announced Monday.

Dorel, headquartered in Montréal, owns Pacific Cycle, the parent company of Schwinn, GT and Mongoose. The purchase is reported as an all-cash transaction valued between $190 million and $200 million.

The Bethel, Connecticut-based Cannondale, which also holds Sugoi Performance Apparel Company, a clothing brand, was previously held by Pegasus Capital Advisors, which purchased the company in 2003.

As a result of the acquisition, Dorel’s recreational/leisure segment, which includes Pacific Cycle, InStep, Playsafe and Roadmaster, will be split into two separate divisions. The Cannondale Sports Group, which will target the independent bicycle dealer and be separate from the mass-market line, will include Cannondale, Sugoi, GT and the company’s other premium bicycle brands, presumably Schwinn and Mongoose. Cannondale Sports has already stated that it plans to seek acquisitions of similar high-quality brands.

Pacific Cycle president Jeff Frehner will leave Pacific immediately to oversee the Cannondale Sports Group as president. Cannondale president Matt Mannelly will continue to run Cannondale Bicycle.

“Dorel recognizes the importance and potential of the independent bicycle dealer channel and is purchasing Cannondale as the first step to become the world’s No. 1 IBD player,” said Martin Schwartz, Dorel president and CEO.

Added Mannelly: “The end result will be a continuous flow of innovative product to our dealers and consumers.”

Teams and riders sponsored by Cannondale include Liquigas, Cannondale-Vredestein, Health Net-Maxxis, U.S. cyclocross national champion Tim Johnson and Tinker Juarez.