Importer Sinnis is said to be expanding fast, moving upmarket and pushing its electric brand Niu with the opening in London of a retail flagship store in Shoreditch.
Niu claims to be the world’s largest e-scooter brand, with flagship stores in Amsterdam, Paris, Hamburg, Munich, London and, shortly, Milan. There is also a Premium Store in Barcelona.
The Chinese brand started production in 2015 after a successful crowdfunding campaign. By 2017 it had 500 stores in China, 400 sales points in Europe and had sold 330,000 e-scooters. That total is “now approaching one million units”.
Brighton-based distributor Sinnis took on the brand late last year and Niu dealer account manager Thomas Rimell is positive about the reception in the UK’s growing electric motorcycle market.
“It’s going really well,” he said. “We have our first flagship store opening up in London, and then we’ve got other flagship stores planned over the next two years for other parts of the country – Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Glasgow. It’s pretty exciting.
“We have got some good quality dealerships coming on board.”
Rimell said some of the sales success of Niu came down to the ULEZ in London, and there would be similar potential as northern cities followed suit. As for the opening of Niu’s flagship London store, Rimell said the showroom was a departure from traditional motorcycle outlets. “It’s like going into a High Street shop to purchase an electric vehicle, so it is the same as walking into a Huawei, Apple, or Samsung store.
“There won’t be e-scooters everywhere, there won’t be bike gear everywhere, there will be a nice clean simple area, with plants, green wall, open space. People can come in for test rides. It’s not going to be, ‘sit down at the salesman’s desk and let’s see what we can do for you’, it’s going to be totally different.”
More in the November issue of BDN.