Beloved bike brand set to appoint administrators

West Yorkshire-based Orange Bikes has been around for over 30 years

Orange Bikes RX9 Gravel road bike
(Image credit: Orange Bikes)

British mountain bike brand Orange Bikes has filed its intention to appoint administrators. 

A notice was published on Caseboard, a legal data website, on 22 December, revealing the company's plan.

Four days before the filing, Orange Bikes announced it would close down its mountain bike Factory Racing team for the 2024 season, citing rising costs and “uncertainty” in the bike industry. 

In a statement published on 18 December, the company said it would instead focus its efforts on its “main goal of creating world-class bikes”. 

It read: “Whilst we're celebrating the successes of the team, we're also drawing a line under this particular chapter of Orange’s history. Orange Factory Racing won’t return for 2024. 

“With so much uncertainty in the bike industry, challenges around the future of the Enduro World Cup Series, and the sheer cost of running a competitive Factory-level team, we’re pressing pause.

“We’ll return when the time is right. But for now, we’re ending on a high and will take a break to focus on our main goal of creating world-class bikes.”

Orange Bikes added that the brand “isn’t going anywhere”, before filing its intention to appoint administrators four days later. 

The news comes after a difficult year for the cycling industry, in which major cycling distributors Moore Large, 2Pure and FLi ceased trading. 

At the end of October, online retail giant Wiggle Chain Reaction Cycles entered administration, with a buyer for the business still to be announced. 

In Orange Bikes’ most recently published accounts, which cover the year to November 2022, the company revealed long-term debts of almost £475,000. 

Cycling Weekly has approached the company for comment, with an official statement yet to be made regarding administration. 

Founded in 1988, Orange Bikes primarily creates high performance mountain bikes, but has also released gravel and road models.

It launched its Orange Factory Racing team in 2020, recruiting mountain bikers Joe Connell, Lachlan Blair and Tom Wilson to represent British manufacturing on the world stage. 

The team lasted for three years, ending on a “bittersweet note” last month. 

Entering administration does not necessarily signal the demise of a company. Last June, British bike manufacturer Planet X filed an intention to appoint administrators, but was sold days later to a company funded by a private equity firm.

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