Thursday, November 3, 2011

Giant Bike gets even bigger with technology & image

Giant Bike's two leaders push the company forward

When it comes to eco-friendly transportation, there is nothing more efficient than a bicycle. With extensive research and development, Giant Bicycle Company is using technology to make riding more pleasurable as well as efficient. Leading by example is King Liu, chairman of Giant. 

Doug and King Liu (R) in the Giant factory of Taiwan
At 78 years of age, Liu still rides 40Km to work each day and is internationally known for his long distance rides. A few years ago, he paid to have an entire Taiwanese delegation fly to the Netherlands to witness their country-wide bicycle network. Since then, Taiwan has been improving its bike paths and is working to link them all together into a national network as well.

Before taking a tour of the Giant factory today, Liu and CEO Tony Lo talked about how Giant has become a world leader in bike production and the technology they leverage to remain a leader in the industry.

“Sponsoring teams of world class riders really pushes the boundaries and it keeps the pressure on” said Lo. Responding to their comments and complaints, Giant works to solve problems that will eventually improve all their bikes. He pointed to a specific mountain bike that was improved by switching to larger tires. The evaluation and testing never stops. Each race can provide more information and now they are planning to make further improvements.

While Lo pushes technology for constant innovation, Chairman Liu is promoting the imaging of cycling. At his age, he is a model of fitness. Biking is what keeps him young, and his personal drive keeps him going, looking for new challenges. When you see all that he has accomplished, you can’t help but want to get out there and get in shape.  Giant Bike is there to put the wheels under your seat. Taiwan is waiting with dozens of places to ride – from easy to hard-core.

When asked about future advances in bike technology, Lo predicted that 30-40 speed bikes were a possibility, but for sure, electronic bikes would become more prevalent. “Don’t be surprised if you will eventually see an iBike,” joked Lo. With 150 engineers world-wide, it might be sooner than you think.                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

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