1. Elaine Curtin
Commercial Director, Farrelly Atkinson
The commercial director of Farrelly Atkinson (F-At) is a long-established player in the bicycle industry. Back in the mists of time she had commercial roles at Ride magazine and at Future, where she helped the staging of Future’s first two ‘Bike’ shows.
Sticking with events, Curtin has gone on to play a pivotal role in the continuing success of Core Bike, one of the longest running and dare we say essential trade shows in the UK cycle industry.
Since 2008 Curtin has worked at Farrelly Atkinson, promoted to commercial director in 2009. In her role her duties include working on both road.cc and Singletrack, as well as providing support to cycle to work provider Cyclescheme.
2. Julie and Simon Ellison
Another of the UK trade’s notable directors with a relentless pursuit of growth for their business are Julie and Simon Ellison, founders of Yorkshire-based Zyro.
Careful expansion over the years has seen Zyro become what it says is the largest privately owned P&A distributor in the UK. Little wonder, then, that it is the globe’s largest distributor for many of the brands in its growing portfolio.
3. Anna Glowinski
Glowinski is the brain behind AnaNichoola, one of the burgeoning brands designed by women, for women.
Established in 2009, the firm swiftly turned out the kind of product that was entirely alien to the cycle world – high heel SPD shoes, anyone? – the kind of product that didn’t only fill a niche but actually spoke to a wide range of female cyclists fed up to the proverbial back teeth with ‘shrinking and pinking’. As one of the firms that played a key role in moving the women’s cycle market away from those cliches, AnaNichoola has also kept a closer eye on following high street trends than perhaps cycle clothing had been known for.
Aside from the pioneering brand and steering it into plenty of media coverage, Glowinski is a presenter for ITV4’s Cycle Show and can be found hosting women’s cycling seminars, including at this year’s London Bike Show.
4. Isla Rowntree
Founder, Isla Bikes
Isla Rowntree is widely known as a pioneer of properly built kids bikes for both casual and performance use.
The big news for the Brimfield, UK-based brand in recent times has been the expansion into America, with the opening of a Portland, Oregon headquarters in April 2013. The USA operation is run by Tim Goodall, who has worked with Isla Rowntree since the company’s inception.
Back in the UK, Isla Bikes have continued to test well in the consumer press with The Independent singling the Cnoc 14 bike out as one of the best Christmas presents for a child.
In many ways it is a surprise it has taken so long, but a number of brands have recently moved into the same ‘niche’ of quality children’s bikes. Whether they’d be in existence had Isla Rowntree’s brand not forged the way in the first place is a point that’s up for debate.