Whether Titus Cycles survives to build bikes in the future is unclear, but what is clear is that the Tempe, Arizona based company is undergoing bank foreclosure.
In an email sent to dealers last week, Titus reps said the company had been working through a “challenging year” and had made efforts to restructure the company.
“Unfortunately, we have run out of time,” the email said.
Titus’ largest lender, Factors Southwest, took control of the bike company on Nov. 9, and is in the process of finding a buyer. It is not interested in breaking up the company to sell just its assets, according to Bicycle Retailer and Industry News. Factors Southwest is accepting bids to buy Titus until Nov. 19.
Over nearly two decades, Titus had built a loyal rider base with bikes like the RacerX, but had seen major changes in recent years. In 2007, founder Chris Cocalis departed and founded Pivot Cycles.
In the last year Titus had slowly been laying off employees in an effort to right the ship. Now, however, the company’s lender is engaging a third party to head up an auction process and collect bids, according to BR&IN.
At the 2009 Interbike, Titus showed several all-new carbon fiber mountain bikes including the FTM Carbon and a redesigned X Carbon. For 2010, Titus introduced the Rockstar 29er.
Titus didn’t do any actual frame building in Tempe. With the popularity of carbon fiber, the company depended on overseas suppliers for its carbon bikes. All the aluminum frames were welded in Portland, Oregon and shipped to Arizona for final assembly and quality control. Most titanium was similarly outsourced.
The Nov. 19 auction will include Titus’ trade names, trademarks, logos, Web site, customer lists, inventory and all personal property. It also will include Titus’ Horst Link license currently held by Specialized, according to BR&IN.