I went to have a look at the Cell Bikes website and got the message below:

Dear Customer,

It is with a heavy heart, that after more than 15 years in business, we have had to close Cell Bikes. Changing market dynamics have made trading too difficult to continue operating the Cell Bikes business. Thank you for all of your support over the years. 

Our website domain has now been transferred to Bicycles Online. We have great comfort in knowing that our loyal customers will be well looked after by Bicycles Online for any of their future cycling product needs.

Bicycles Online has a similar direct to market business model as we did at Cell Bikes so you can have comfort in knowing that you are still getting great value. They will be carrying many of the same products that were previously offered by Cell Bikes. Sign up below for notification of when these new products will be available and also receive a 10% off parts and accessories discount code!

If there is anything that you would like them to carry please let them know.

 

Kind Regards,

Cell Bikes Team 

 

I remember stories of people buying their bikes for the groupsets. It seemed for a while that Reid and Cell Bikes were in a development race with road bikes that were capable of taking racks and reasonable mountain bikes. They even had the Cell Brunswick versus the Reid Granite in the cyclocross field. 
The thing I really appreciate about Cell Bikes was one of the owners/staff going to his local member who happened to be Mike Baird and stating the case against Dunnycan Gay's anti-cycling laws. 
I am commuting on an old Cell S2200 which is heading towards 25000 km. I also have a Cell singlespeed. 
Is the demise of Cell Bikes a result of the NSW govts anti-cycling laws (Cell Bikes were a Sydney brand in the same way Reid Cycles were from Melbourne), or is there something more?

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You can blame NSW govts anti cycling laws on many things but hardly the bust of Cell.

Cell was a well established business in a non shrinking market.  Their fundamental business model doesn't seem risky, in fact it seems solid.

Thus I would suggest that it was mismanagement along with overextending themselves through expansion.  It can send plenty of small and large businesses to the wall.

I'm not sure how many new stores they opened but it takes alot of capital.  New store in North Fitzroy, expensive lease, expensive fit out, more bikes, new employees and training.  All takes alot of money and in a competitive market.


Brunswick Cycles in Melbourne went bust in very dodgy circumstances.  Mismanagement, rapid expansion and dare I say it possibly less than scrupulous managers.  Funnily enough the same faces were seen opening new stores under a new name within months, fittings and equipment that mysteriously went missing from Brunswick Cycles reappeared in the new stores.

I got that email last week too. Wondered if Cell had sold its customer database to Bicycles Online as well.

Had a look at Bicycles Online, and received an email from them the next morning highlighting the exact bike I was looking at. So I guess its a yes, Bicycles Online did acquire Cell's customer database. Which, let's face it, would have been a valuable part of the sale.

I see a strong link to an aggressively expanding market (Bike Bug and Pushys get my business) with Cell being left behind.

I bought stuff from Cell from time to time, but the shop rarely had anything in stock that I wanted and everything had to be sent from elsewhere the next day.

Even if it was only a tiny thing, it was sent individually as Express Post. I often wondered how they could make any money doing things that way.

Reid / Bikes99 competed in directly the same space and location
BikeBug / CyclingExpress et al in the online shopping

I wish the advocates at Cell the best

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