A decision over the future of Mavic is expected by the end of this month with a French court now assessing more than a dozen bids for the troubled bicycle wheel brand which has been in administration since May.
The final five bids were formally presented to the commercial court in Grenoble on Thursday, reports Le Dauphiné Liberé.
The court will now decide on which of the bids to be accepted, although if none are deemed viable there remains the possibility that the company will be liquidated.
US trade publication Bicycle Retailer And Independent News (BRAIN) reports however that a proposed bid from mountain bike brand Fox Factory has been withdrawn.
Chris Tutton, president of Fox's Specialty Sports Group, which includes the Fox and Marzocchi suspension brands plus Easton Cycling and Race Face, told BRAIN: “We did get into due diligence with Mavic but after a deep dive I have decided to pull our bid and remove Fox from the process.”
He added, however, that Fox Factory is “certainly looking to make acquisitions inside the bicycle industry if the fit is right for our brands.”
Last month, the French radio station France Bleu published a list of all 14 bids that the court in Grenoble had received for Mavic.
All but two of those contemplate preserving some of the 250 jobs at Mavic, most of them in France.
However, closure of some of all of the company’s production facilities, some of them shared with other businesses of former owners Amer Sports.
Bids include one from François Guers, owner of the Time brand, and would see consolidation of Mavic’s facilities in France, as well as bringing back to the country half of its production currently in Romania, saving 113 jobs.
The offer that has attracted most headlines is one that involves five-time Tour de France winner Bernard Hinault, who would act as brand ambassador if the bid, from SELAS Poulmaire which would keep 110 jobs and Mavic’s factory in Saint-Trivier, proves successful.
Last December, the company, which is based in Annecy in the French Alps, entered a process called conciliation which, under French insolvency law, seeks to arrive at an agreement between a business in difficulties and its creditors.
Subsequently, in February this year French business turnaround firm BySaving assumed management of the company, which in May entered a process called redressement judiciaire, under which a court appoints a receiver who, working with management, seeks to maximise returns to creditors.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.