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Markets & Economies Course Work, KCL, Singapore The firm’s hero product is the Brompton - a light and durable bicycle that can be folded conveniently and neatly into the size of a briefcase
University King's College London (KCL)
Subject Markets & Economies
Posted on: 23rd Aug 2023

Markets & Economies Course Work, KCL, Singapore The firm’s hero product is the Brompton – a light and durable bicycle that can be folded conveniently and neatly into the size of a briefcase

The firm’s hero product is the Brompton—a light and durable bicycle that can be folded conveniently and neatly into the size of a briefcase for easy storage and transportation. Engineer Andrew Ritchie first developed the revolutionary design in his South Kensington flat in 1975, naming the bicycle after the Brompton Oratory which he could see from his window. Full-time production of the bike began under some railway arches in Bollo Lane, Brentford in 1988, and it soon became a cult classic. As demand grew, the company first expanded to a 22,000 square foot factory in Brentford, and then in 2015, to an 86,000 square foot facility a short pedal away in Greenford, West London.

It is the enduring popularity of the Brompton bike that has driven the firm’s remarkable growth. The firm even experienced strong growth during and following the late 2000s “credit crunch” and recession: average annual growth in the period since 2008 has been a remarkable 20 percent. The company sold around 45,000 folding bikes in 2015, generating revenues of some £21 million and a profit of £3.4 million. In 2021, the aim is to produce and sell 100,000 bikes —representing more than a doubling of output in just over five years. In spite of these remarkable figures, the company is still relatively small, employing just 500 members of staff.

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