Coronavirus pandemic helps bicycle shop as people opt outside

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    MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) — Changing habits because of the coronavirus has been forcing more people outside, some of those folks have turned to biking to spend their free time.

That in turn made bicycles a hot commodity during this pandemic and Cadence 120 was sold out at one point and customers were waiting days if not weeks to hit the trail.

“There’s no way to predict this,” said Brad Burton, Owner of Cadence 120 Bicycles. “I wouldn’t have even predicted this at the beginning of March.”

It would be an understatement to say the bike business is booming.

“This will be our best year ever by far,” Burton said. “Not by a little bit, by a long bit.”

For months the shop has not been able to keep bicycles on the shelves.

They have a few ready to go right now and they are lucky for that.

“There’s literally nothing left in the supply chain in the bicycle business right now even repair parts, tires, tubes,” Burton said. “All my distributors are out of them.”

The NPD Group, a market research company that tracks the bicycle industry, said there is record sales, up 75% in April compared to last year.

“We’re very fortunate to be busy and doing very well, I certainly feel for the other business owners and everything,” Burton said. “We could just as easily be on the flipside of this.”

New bicycles make up part of their business, but they also do plenty of repairs.

Burton said before the coronavirus repairs would take a few days, now they are so busy it could take three weeks.

“We’ve been working 70-hour weeks for 14-15 weeks now so we’re pretty tired,” he said.

Burton said they were so backed up at points they had to close their doors while they caught up. He said sales have slowed down a little in the last few weeks, but he expects to that change as the weather cools down.

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