Next-Gen, who claim to be the first and only factory/designer-to-consumer internet brand platform, has launched. Through this new 'F/D-2-C' setup, consumers can choose to buy exclusive products directly from the designer and factory which manufacturers it, bypassing all the middle men.
Nex-Gen represents a group of “highly experienced” sports product designers, engineers, materials and manufacturing experts, who work together under a Mutually Beneficial Cooperation (MBC), to produce exclusive and innovative products available via its website, which can be found here. From the bike industry there's a selection of road, track and mountain bike products available, and there's also products from the world of kayaking, rock climbing and motocross represented.
Who are these bike industry veterans? Well, Nex-Gen has rounded up some familiar and very respected names.
Paul Lew is an aerodynamics expert who has been working in wheel and carbon component development since 1989. He is famous for designing the Black Hole wheel (spokeless, hubless front wheel for track cycling) in the mid-1990s and the innovative PRO VT-1 full carbon wheel in the 2000s.
Lew took over as CEO of Edco in 2016, having previously joined Reynolds Cycling as the Director of Technology and Innovation in 2008 and before that re-designing Shimano’s wheel programme in 2003.
Another of Nex-Gen’s leading veterans is Dimitris Katsanis. He is an expert in 3D titanium printing and composites and went on to found Metron PLC.
Katsanis has also been the Principal design consultant for Team Sky/Ineos and is famous for designing the British Cycling track team bikes which went on to win multiple medals at the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Olympics. He has also worked as a Technical Director for the UCI previously.
Also part of the Nex-Gen is Andrea Invernizzi (Ex- head product designer at Deda Elementi and Dedacciai), Victor Major (CEO of Velocite Tech Co Ltd) and Adam Gans (former Director of Development and Innovation at Nike, Adidas, Bauer, Performance Sports Group and Reebox-CCM).
But why are these experts coming together?
Nex-Gen says: “There currently exists a wide chasm in the world of high performance sporting goods that represents what can be purchased through the regular high-street-brand (HSB) multi-link distribution model and what is physically possible given world best design, technology, materials and no budgetary constraint.
“For the first time experts from numerous fields work together to design, develop and manufacture a wide range of highly refined sporting goods products without the physical and often financial restraints common in highly structured organisations with traditional sales models.”
Exciting products are beginning to line the Nex-Gen site already, with 3D printed saddles said to be coming soon, road wheels under development and much, much more.
What is currently available? There's a 3D printed titanium alloy stem (114 grams) is available from Metron, with a +/- 8 degree rise.
CEO and Co-Founder of Nexgen, Paul Farrell, shares more on Nexgen came to be in the video below.
Anna has been hooked on bikes ever since her youthful beginnings at Hillingdon Cycle Circuit. As an avid road and track racer, she reached the heady heights of a ProCyclingStats profile before leaving for university. Having now completed an MA in Multimedia Journalism, she’s hoping to add some (more successful) results. Although her greatest wish is for the broader acceptance of wearing funky cycling socks over the top of leg warmers.