Wiggle CRC

Wiggle Chain Reaction Deal Falls Through: Mike Ashley Buys Name and IP

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Last time we reported on the Wiggle CRC administration it looked like the company could be bought as a going concern, with a number of buyers apparently interested. Now, sources say that’s all off the cards, and today we understand there has been a mass laying off of staff across the company. We’re hearing that the company will live on in name only, with the brands and (Intellectual Property) IP being bought by Mike Ashley although this has yet to be confirmed.

We have also heard today that Wiggle has made the majority of its 450 staff redundant.

One industry insider said, “So Wiggle/CRC/Hotlines/Nukeproof etc are all gone in the last hour. Apparently Mike Ashley has bought the IP to it all.

One source, who no longer has a job at CRC said: ‘The day the [Wiggle/CRC] “merger” was announced we were doomed. They dismantled everything that was good about CRC, piece by piece.
Nobody expected Wiggle to go under, however, that’s what happens when corporate greed takes over.’

This is a breaking story and we will update as we get more information.

If all this proves to be true, what’s next?

Mike Ashley owns Frasers Group, which already owns Evans Cycles. This group has something of a reputation for buying up companies in administration. We had thought that buying the whole WiggleCRC business could increase their online capacity and improve direct purchasing power from factories. However, we’re hearing that Mike Ashley has just bought the IP and names. At this stage we’re not sure of the extent of the purchase, but within the WiggleCRC business the bike brands Nukeproof, Vitus and Ragley are registered. Whether we’ll see the actual IP for bikes coming over to the Fraser Group and Gigas or Sentiers popping up in Evans remains to be seen. It might just be bike shaped objects bearing the brand names – as we’ve seen with Muddy Fox, for example.

As well as bike brands, WiggleCRC has many in house brands, some of which like DHB have gained an established reputation. There’s also running gear, paddlesport and watersports stuff – all of which might sit well in a Sports Direct store, another part of the Frasers Group.

In recent days there have been some signs that things were not going to plan, with more Nukeproof athletes announcing their departure from the brand. Then today, Wednesday 21st February, many staff were let go – we’re not clear if it’s all staff, or almost all. We’ve reached out to as many contacts as we can – hardly a pleasant task when you know they’re likely to be reeling from redundancy news – so we’ll update you as we hear more. We think an official press release can’t be far away, now that staff have been let go.

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Viewing 18 posts - 241 through 258 (of 258 total)
  • Wiggle Chain Reaction Deal Falls Through: Mike Ashley Buys Name and IP
  • squirrelking
    Free Member

    Well I for one sincerely hope the debt with Skynet has been settled, we don’t need that kind of hassle…

    martinhutch
    Full Member

    I see they owe(d) Hermes/Evri more than 140 grand. Which could explain why they don’t seem to be in a hurry to deliver my final order…

    Also, 20 grand in Haribo not paid for. Sounds like it wasn’t just us getting free sweets.

    mc
    Free Member

    Some distributors were still supplying until fairly recently, so I’m guessing debts must have been cleared to a reasonable level.

    The bigger fallout will be if Nukeproof disappears. All those bike shops who sold them, would then be liable for the warranty, and I’d guess very few of those shops would be able to absorb the cost of refunding/compensating customers for many failures.

    sillyoldman
    Full Member

    And there are many failures.

    john dough
    Free Member

    house of frazer are selling trek.

    doomanic
    Full Member

    There is a need for a Contract where it stays your property until the Bill is paid in full.

    Frankly I’d be amazed if there wasn’t such a clause. When I had a shop all suppliers had a “goods remain the property of XXX until paid for in full”. How enforceable it is, OTOH…

    zilog6128
    Full Member

    All those bike shops who sold them, would then be liable for the warranty

    not the case at all. If Nukeproof go (and they have gone, surely?) any warranties are worthless. Nothing to do with the retailer (beyond statutory rights).

    tenacious_doug
    Free Member

    any warranties are worthless. Nothing to do with the retailer (beyond statutory rights).

    This is just playing with terminology.

    While yes a “warranty” is with the manufacturer, there’s a hell of a lot of protection afforded by the consumer rights act that the shops will still be on the hook for, and can’t hide behind the “it’s a warranty so you need to take it up with the manufacturer” excuse.

    zilog6128
    Full Member

    It really isn’t. After 6 months the onus would be on the buyer to prove a manufacturing defect in the event of e.g. a snapped frame. Good luck with that. Massively different compared to the 5-year warranty offered by NP.

    RichBowman
    Full Member

    FWIW – my friend’s company is on that list. They were paid the full amount, and even were able to send more through to wiggle for sale (but a lot smaller order).

    mc
    Free Member

    not the case at all. If Nukeproof go (and they have gone, surely?) any warranties are worthless. Nothing to do with the retailer (beyond statutory rights).

    As a consumer, your contract is with the retailer. You legally have no contract with the manufacturer. Yes, manufacturer’s will often deal with a customer directly, but they have no legal requirement to do so. If your retailer disappears, legally the manufacturer could simply tell you it’s not their problem, but doing so would be a PR disaster.

    If you buy a product with a 5 year warranty, then a retailer can’t suddenly say only your statutory rights apply, just because the manufacturer no longer exists.

    zilog6128
    Full Member

    If you buy a product with a 5 year warranty, then a retailer can’t suddenly say only your statutory rights apply, just because the manufacturer no longer exists.

    that is exactly what will happen. The warranty is nothing to do with the bike shop. If you’re buying a telly from John Lewis then it’s different as they provide the warranty themselves.

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    I suspect a lot of product was already returned to manufacturers where possible, all the DMR stuff was wiped after the liquidation announcement and I bet others were similar.

    “If you buy a product with a 5 year warranty, then a retailer can’t suddenly say only your statutory rights apply, just because the manufacturer no longer exists.”

    Of course they can in exactly the same way they can refuse to warranty a Specialized they sold if they were no longer part of their dealer network. Warranties are provided by manufacturers, how you go about claiming depends on their distribution model but ultimately it lies with them. No manufacturer, no warranty. You could try making a class action claim but you won’t get far if there is no legal entity to take to court.

    mudpup
    Free Member

    “Endura owed quite a bit”

    We were talking about this last week. Endura (and others) must be fuming, they havent been paid, and then,to rub it in even more, their stock is being sold at cost price, so nowhere else in the Country is having any Endura sales, as CRC are so cheap, hence they are not selling any other stuff to anyone else.

    This is only the tip of the iceberg……as well as nobody else selling Endura (as an example) at the moment the public will have been loading up with seasons worth of spare kit at these prices. So Endura will be looking at years worth of reduced sales. It’s likely that they are overstocked at the moment (as are most of the other companies on the debtors list) and they may even still have incoming stock from forecasts that CRC would have been taking it. Oh, and they’ve probably lost their single biggest customer/route to market as well…… You can copy/paste most of the bike trade brands/distributors that were dealing with CRC into that scenario and we wont see the true impact until after the spring of next year as they will be moving a lot less product through this summer/autumn. They rely on those summer sales to float through the winter….

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    Seasons worth of kit.

    Or

    A pile of tat I bought because it was cheap but I’m not really that keen on.

    What’s a seasons worth of kit anyway? I’ve still got MX tops I was racing DH in 20 years ago. Christ, how many people have spent at least a weeks worth of minimum wage on “bargains” they admit they didn’t need?

    Yes, I bought a pile of stuff too, mostly a dropper, some service kits and the last pair of schraeder tubeless valves.

    I’m not particularly judging, would be pretty hypocritical if I was, but my point is that if people can spaff over 300 quid on stuff they know they don’t need then I’m sure they’ll find the money for stuff they do want.

    robertajobb
    Full Member

    “No manufacturer, no warranty. You could try making a class action claim but you won’t get far if there is no legal entity to take to court.”

    Not a.class action at all.  Just an individual claim against the retailer as the retailer sold you a bike with a warranty.  Could also stick the ‘mis-sold / misleading sales’ claim in whilst at it if the retailer told you there was a warranty then try to side-step it as not theirs.

    I’d be sticking it into the small claims court. £10k limit there these days, which will cover nearly all bikes except some Santa Cruz, Pinarello or top time trial bikes.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    “If you buy a product with a 5 year warranty, then a retailer can’t suddenly say only your statutory rights apply, just because the manufacturer no longer exists.”

    They can if it’s the manufacturer’s warranty. If the retailer is providing their own warranty, that’s different.

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    “Not a.class action at all. Just an individual claim against the retailer as the retailer sold you a bike with a warranty. ”

    Unless John Lewis or Costco have been selling Nukeproof gear then as pointed out that’s a manufacturer warranty.

    “If the item is faulty then you will have your legal rights under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 against the retailer. You may also have a separate warranty direct with the manufacturer – and if you pay extra to the retailer for an ‘extended warranty’ you may also have another set of rights against the retailer or third party insurer.

    Bottom line is that when a product breaks (especially if very soon after purchase) you should use your legal rights. Only if they do not cover the problem should you move onto a free manufacturer warranty or a paid for warranty”

    Who is liable for faulty goods – the retailer or manufacturer?

Viewing 18 posts - 241 through 258 (of 258 total)

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