Wrap-Up: 2012 Sydney Bike and Lifestyle Show

The 2012 Sydney Bike and Lifestyle show from Cycling Australia drew to a close on Sunday and after its second year was bigger and better. Shimano Australia presented the new 11 speed Dura Ace groupset and Bike Sportz Imports showed off their brands while most other brands were represented via the Atelier de Vélo and Velosophy bike stores. There were ongoing peripheral activities such as a small indoor MTB test track, children’s bicycle skills area, a halfpipe and trials area plus Bike Polo which meant that family audiences had more to see and do.

While the crowds on Friday night after work were a bit thin, even with the promise of live telecast of the Tour de France from 10pm – 2am, Saturday and Sunday saw better weather compared with 2011 and healthier crowd numbers so that the most exhibitors had a constant stream of visitors at their stands.

Though the show was double the size and had more ongoing peripheral activities, one industry professional commented that it was missing the energy, for example to let visitors know which activities are currently running which workshops or stage presentations are starting, a hall-wide announcement from an energetic MC would have been useful. That said, they commented that it was none-the-less positive show and a healthy improvement on the first year.

The show was held back from reaching its full potential as the ticket price is quite high, $22 for adults. There were concessions available and also in combination with RIDE magazine or Cycling Australia, discounted entry was available. The pre-booked internet tickets actually ended up more expensive than a (single) door ticket with ticketek adding a hefty $5.30 booking fee. Although the organiser has running costs and needs a balance between exhibitor costs and entry ticket costs, this is still a young Expo so the entry costs have kept some people away while others who attended expected even more for their money.

Sydney needs an annual bike show so it would be fantastic to see more importers and brands getting in on the show and making this a bigger show in 2013 which would give both audiences and exhibitors more.

UPDATE: Speaking to the organiser from Cycling Australia, they reported an increase in visitor numbers and noted that the Friday night live Tour de France viewing was signficantly smaller than last year though with positive feedback from exhibitors will now go into a review phase before planning 2013.


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About The Author

Christopher Jones is a recreational cyclist and runs a professional design business, Signale. As the driving force behind Bicycles.net.au he has one of each 'types' of bicycles.

3 responses to “Wrap-Up: 2012 Sydney Bike and Lifestyle Show”

  1. Warren says:

    I agree with your article, there was a lack of energy and vibe. It wasn’tt busy on the Sunday and the expo was very quiet, there wasn’t a buzz at all.
    The ticket price was expensive for what was on offer but I took the family for the day out. The free entry for under 16 yo was great so it took the sting off paying $44 for two adults. The kids had a ball on the Trek skill centre and have been practising since.
    I went to book online but the ticketek fee adding turned me off. We just purchased tickets on the day.
    I’d love a bicycle show annually in Sydney it’s why I went along this year and I’m looking forward to seeing how it changes in 2013.
    More bicycle manufactures would be fantastic, a one stop shop to brands would be excellent for the potential buyer to see what’s on offer from the brands for the year under one roof.

  2. Marcus says:

    I think pay-to-enter product exhibitions have got the wrong idea. I love cycling and I’m interested in what’s new, and I also update my gear and equipment quite often. But considering all the other things I like to do on my precious weekends, driving across town, parking and paying to enter in order to see things I can see in shops or read about on the net is just not convincing. I’d rather be riding my bike, eating with my family or mucking around at home. I can visit shops when I need or want to, and I can read about new products in my quiet times. To get me in, these shows should be free of charge and should offer something special, that you can’t see just by wandering down Clarence St.

  3. paul says:

    I drove up from Canberra with a mate for the show in 2011, it was $25 to enter and was dismal compared to the first open to the public cycle show we went to in melbourne at half the price. The guys from shimano were total prats and left both us old tourers feeling like we were not in “the club”Haven’t bothered with shows here in Oz since,catch up with the cycling world in Japan and Taiwan now, much better and more informative.