DOWNTOWN CHARLESTON, SC (WCBD) – Bike shops are facing shortages like many other businesses across the country as the holiday season approaches.
“A lot of people say it must be great to be on a bike and I’m blessed, and I’m happy about that,” said the founder and owner of Bilda Bike and the Bilda Bike Flagship store.
The store owner says he is facing an increase in demand and a shortage of supply.
“It’s like being in the toilet paper industry when there’s a shortage of toilet paper,” Einhorn said.
Demand for bikes has been booming at stores like Bilda Bikes since the pandemic began.
“It feels like it was good to be the toilet paper maker in the early days when it got soaring and it’s like that for all bike shops. We’ve all been lucky enough to get rid of a lot of inventory that’s been around for a while,” said Einhorn, who faces unique challenges with high tariffs and shipping costs.
A container that used to cost $3,000 has now skyrocketed to $20,000-30,000.
“We went from the highest of peaks to a not very, not very nice place. Some bike shop owners made big money and some sold out,” Einhorn said with the effects of the pandemic pump breaks for some.
“Other store owners couldn’t get what they wanted, and they had to close their businesses, so that was interesting,” said Einhorn, who had to make tough decisions like stopping service. and rentals to keep their employees safe amid the pandemic.
“Instead, we decided to try to sell my brand or our brand of bikes to other stores across the country and it was, you know, early to mid-2020 and we were surfing this wave so far,” Einhorn said.
He now sells more bikes than the store could ever imagine and he is hopeful for the future.
“Local Charlestonians buy a bike locally. Support me, support other local stores, we appreciate you so much,” Einhorn said.