I just returned on Monday from a whirlwind tour of Asia in Taiwan and Japan. This goodwill tour was all about bringing the Masi word to the masses in Taiwan and Japan- Taiwan being a new market for us, ironically, and Japan being an existing one.
The trip to Taiwan was to assist our distributor there with the introduction of Masi to the local market. The launch was a blend of bikes and fashion, with a "cat walk" feel to it all. To add to the fashion show, the main model was a young woman named Mitsue Nagaya- who models around the world for such brands as Gucci, Fendi and others... and she is now the spokes model for Masi Taiwan.
Here, Mitsue is introducing the Mini-Velo (currently only available in Taiwan and Japan) to the Taiwanese television audience.
The television crew spent some quality time with the bikes just a short while before the catwalk began.
Here, with the nice warm lighting, the Speciale Fixed LTD looks even sexier than usual... if that's possible.
Setting up the lighting and prepping the bikes- their television debut just ahead of them!
Here, the SoulVille 10 is being introduced by Taipei professional baseball player and Olympic team member, Feng-Min Chen. He signed numerous autographs before and after the launch... even more than I did...
Here I am presenting the bikes to the television cameras. Lemme tell you- it's hot under those lights... really hot!
Having a little laugh at the end of the show with Mitsue. She's a very nice young woman and defies the typical stereotypes of super models... AND she knows a good bike when she sees one!
Once done planting the seeds of total domination in Taiwan, I was on a plane to Tokyo for the Cycle-Mode consumer and retailer tradeshow. I attended the same show last year to support our distributor there, Azuma Trading. Since that time a year ago, the Japanese market has become the second largest for Masi USA outside of North America!
Once again, my gracious hosts did a fantastic job of representing the Masi line along with the other brands they distribute into Japan. Masi is in great company with these other brands.
One of the more unique aspects of the Cycle-Mode shows is that it blends retailers and consumers in an expo that also allows test rides of many bikes.
The fleet of demo bikes just waiting for riders...
... and the riders did show up!
This is my "keirin racing brother" and the Coltello he built up to display at the show- it got lots of attention too because he did a pretty cool job of it.
There were Masi bikes all over the place!
A very nicely done display of SoulVille bikes too.
The show felt like a great success and the consumers who rode the demo bikes all seemed to be pretty happy with the experience. Obviously, since I do not speak Japanese I am not totally sure what was being said, but smiles do say a lot.
All in all, I'd have to say it was another great trip for Masi and I am very happy to see more international growth of the Masi brand.