It is a pity but it seems that my relationship with the brand Assos, which I practically introduced to Spain, has come to an end. My relationship with the brand began when I was in charge of a sports shop where cycling sportswear barely sold. As a cyclist, I was familiar with this prestigious brand, known for its high quality apparel. I suggested to my boss at the time that he carry the line. My boss’ first reaction was: “But, look at these prices, this brand’s expensive! How can we sell this?”
He was wrong. From the moment that I placed a mannequin wearing a pair of cycling tights (the Assos TFI 13 S2 to be precise) in the shop’s window, an instant boom in sales ensued. Later on, I opened my own business and, together with my wife, created U51, a shop whose signature trademark was and is personal consultancy to any and all sports enthusiasts who want to dress in the finest brands or are looking for the best the market has to offer. That was when it dawned on me that there was a dearth of information on material, fabrics or how manufacturers size their brands differently. There was no information at all. Right about then I had the idea of making explanatory videos of my brands, products and, especially, Assos products, which I thought were excellent. The sales of this brand were incredible; I am convinced that this was due in large part to my sales technique and an ability to transmit to customers the quality and types of maillots or cycling T’s, culottes or cycling tights, and so forth. Modesty aside, I believe I became a point of selling reference for this brand in Spain; I have always bet on this brand, as cycling chat forums will attest. As a matter of fact, on any given Sunday, 1 out of every 10 cyclists in Guipuzcoa province (Spain) wears Assos because he or she has purchased it in my store, online or by phone, the three ways in which I sell my merchandise.
About a year ago, in my quest to look for, find and offer the best brands to my customers, I came across a new brand which is trying to make a name for itself, the cycling brand U51PRO. It is still unclear if that is the reason why Assos suddenly began to pull back on supplying me with its products, which I had always praised on my blogs, personally in my shop, and so forth. It is true that recently there have been problems with the fabric in some items, issues with company guarantees, and complaints by users which I have not hesitated to hang on my blog. However, we do regret that unilaterally and without official notification (despite my efforts to obtain something in writing) the Assos brand has forbidden us from selling their sportswear, or even to express ourselves in any way about them.
We do not know the real reason. Did they not take kindly to our praising or selling U51PRO cycling wear? Did they take umbrage to our publicizing the dissatisfaction with post-sales customer service or was it due to the drop in quality of the fabric which was brought to our attention by unhappy customers, something which we had observed ourselves?
Clearly, life has taken us down certain paths and not others. I separate myself from Assos, I no longer will sell this brand. First, because I disagree with the company’s methods, their way of handling things, which, I must say, have bordered treacherously at times on genuine threats. Secondly, we believe there are better products available at the same price around. Since it has always been my desire to offer the best to my customers, it makes no sense to continue offering this brand. We have reached an end.
I truly appreciate the loyalty of all of you, who have supported and continue to confide in me. My commitment to personally advising customers and offering them top merchandise has its rewards. You transmit your satisfaction with a job well done every time you go out cycling, mountain climbing or running with a product that I have recommended and provided.
Best to you all and thanks again,