MTB News – interview with CEO Zumbi Cycles & Founder Zumbi Cycles Foundation – Kacper Krakowiak
(editor) The pretext of our meeting is a recent establishment of a Zumbi Cycles Foundation. What within the scope of foundation, Zumbi is planning to do? What does it mean to European enduro cycling or Enduro World Series Championships? Is the Foundation a summary of the 20th anniversary of Zumbi brand? or a completely new chapter in theirs history? I’ve asked all this and more a CEO of Zumbi Cycles, Founder of ZF – Kacper Krakowiak.
(kk) Actually, the Foundation will be operating in Poland, France, Spain, Great Britain, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Its main goal is to support equalizing chances of young Downhill and Enduro riders. We want to help with equipment and training. We are starting with two programs called: Grassroots and NeuroScience. The first of these offers an equipment – bicycles, frames and components, while the second focus on the work with the racers’ psyche. It will also process and develop on a new field of so called “financial intelligence” in sport, especially in mountain biking. Riders will also be able to earn product bonuses as part of the recommendation of Zumbi products to the other riders.
In general Zumbi Foundation would like to promote bike-culture as all; starting from promoting big 29er wheels in downhill, finishing in nutrition and environment saving programs. As we also are a bunch of riders, we want to heat up that love to bikes among the others, showing them an entertainment coming from sport and how cool spots can they find just around the corner. At the moment the Foundation collaborate with Horizon Bikes (Poland) and Dirty2ride (UK) in order to implement its statutory assumptions.
(ed) Let’s talk about Zumbi Cycles, a manufacturer of hand-build enduro bikes. You’ve started in 1999 and for almost 20 years are following the original ideas of the founders, operating with successes not only on European but Worldwide markets. What is Zumbi’s secret?
(kk) I will not be modest if I say that it’s our unique ability to combine innovations with timelessness.
(ed) Details please 😉
(kk) I wasn’t common that days but from the beginning in 1999, Zumbi offered a custom geometry option; than we’ve introduced our original virtual pivot suspension called FPS in 2007; last but not least – Zumbi was probably the first company in the world which produced an electric downhill bicycle in 2008. And after the years bikes build by us are still winning the enduro or dh races. You can still order spare parts for even the oldest designs and I assure You that we are ready to renew every Zumbi frame You have, giving it a totally awesome new life.
(ed) So You are choosing the same way as Patagonia, or other brands, being a part of bigger committed business movement?
(kk) That’s right – each of our full suspension frame is designed and built by man’s hands in a factory in Poland. This in my opinion guarantees the attention to every detail, an extraordinary quality check and the feel that the bike or frame was built by living human paid fair, making an impact in local economics. Again, as I said – people standing behind Zumbi brand are looking forward into the future believing that time of stuff ‘MADE IN TAIWAN’ is no longer an attractive to nowadays’ customers . They look for originality, they want to beinvolved in production process, they ask for emotions, a passion hidden in items.
(ed) And this is what distinguish Zumbi Cycles from other brands?
(kk) Customers are fed of the same designs, same components, same colors schemes, they want something different. And here the Zumbi finds its niche: with products whose fulfill this desire of uniqueness.
(ed) Can you please remind readers what the name Zumbi means?
(kk) Sure … (laughs) it comes from a legendary Brazilian warrior who became famous as an indestructible even after his death. Same as our mountain bikes: hardcore, solid, unbeatable.
(ed) What are your goals for the nearest future?
(kk) Going global – locally. Based on the wishes of customers, our partners, team members, Zumbi’s employees and management. Real attractiveness, providing a technologically advanced product and genuine attention to our Riders. But above all, we are remain an authentic company with the personal commitment of the entire team, creating unique mountain bikes from riders to riders.
(ed) Any new models, premieres?
(kk) Plans are ambitious. In the first half of this year we will present a new downhill frame, a new geometry for enduro F11 bikes and a totally new hardtail construction. Design team would kill me for revealing this news, but what the heck – the electric versions of each of our well know bikes will go to production in the nearest future. But that’s all I can say for now.
(ed) How will you celebrate the 20th anniversary?
(kk) We will start auctions of “vintage” Zumbi models. From now on, customers can send us their frames for restoration. As for custom finish the legendary early-green-scheme will be also available. Such constructions as T-20, 24, DH Team, Voodoo, Quolumbo and Guru are timeless, and that’s what we want to prove during the auction. More details are soon going to be published on our website and social medial so feel welcome to start following!
(ed) When will this auction take place?
(kk) In April 2019. So that we can restore all the competition frames that will come to us. Applications should be sent to [email protected]
(ed) Thank you, I guess I should now start looking for my old downhill frameset …
(kk) Which model?
(ed) F44 Ti …
(kk) It’s nice to hear. We can paint it pink, what d’Ya think? (laugh)
(ed) flowery, please