Hero Cycles, one of the world’s biggest manufacturers of bicycles, has opened a £2m global design centre in Manchester.
Mr Pankaj Munjal, Chairman and Managing Director of Hero Cycles, cut the ribbon at the Hero Cycles Global Design Centre (HGD) at One, Central Park, Manchester – a short distance from the National Velodrome in Manchester, the home of British cycling.
The HGD aims to bring together the best designers and innovators in the bicycle industry from around the world to develop the next generation of bike designs using the very latest technology. It will rationalise the global company’s design functions, bringing together in one place its design, product development, innovation, testing and market research departments.
The facility will employ 25 of the industry’s best design and marketing experts from across Europe. The team will work across several bike segments including traditional disciplines alongside cutting edge futuristic models.
This new centre will help to develop a common mother brand across the Hero Group, homogenise designs and build progeny brands across Europe.
In addition to full time staff, the centre will have free desk space for university students in Manchester who wish to focus on bicycle-related studies. It will also take on at least four apprentices under the government’s recently enhanced Apprenticeship Scheme, placing British talent at the forefront of the industry.
“It is a proud moment for my team and I to open this centre for innovation and design in one of the most sporting and exciting cities in Europe,” said Mr Pankaj Munjal, Chairman and Managing Director, Hero Cycles.
“The UK has long been a world leader in innovative design and this heritage, expertise and access to talent made Manchester the ideal choice for our Global Design Centre.
“With major expansion plans in Europe, this Design Centre will help us produce technology and design to cater to differentiated products to suit the needs of different European markets.
“Our strategy is twofold; to develop British brands here in the UK, build them and export them across Europe, Africa and India and secondly, to increase the value of our Indian-based bike brands.”