Subject: Re: [CR] SUNTOUR vs SHIMANO on Schwinn and everybody elses bikes
"What I find interesting is that Shimano did not private label their parts until its relationship with Schwinn(and I am not sure they did it for anyone else,ever). Remember Schwinn was the giant and Shimano was probably looking at brakes and hubs and dérailleurs for a lot of bikes."
Private label depends on volume committment (both sides) and price. Shimano and JBM group was ready to offer any pricing necessary for the Schwinn business just as they did elsewhere.
"Suntour did brand for us(VISTA) in probably 1973/74. Suntour was limited to what it could provide so builder/assemblers had to deal with many small companies. Shimano was a one stop shop which made bike specifying very simple."
Actually, the JEX group (SunTour, SR, et al) offered a complete range of components for assemblers and was also a one shop stop.
"Lots of what went on was directly under the control of the various trading companies who controlled all bike and component production. Not all of them were equal. Yagami who we used might have been the strongest (I wonder if Schwinn used them also?)"
Yagami was not the strongest but was certainly the most idiosyncratic by far, and I mean that in the most positive possible way. I have the utmost respect for Yagami. But one time, I was with some Marui people at a trade show and the name Yagami came up, which resulted in derisive laughter from all present except for me as I was quite shocked by the rudeness. An interesting moment.
"The Trading Company system may have broken down by the late 70s , does anyone know definitively?"
The trading company system has long historical roots in Japanese society, is alive and well, and likely to remain so.
Hugh Enox La Honda, California USA
chilly MILL VALLEY, CA USA