Shimano is a Japanese manufacturer of bicycle components, fishing tackle, and rowing equipment. Their bicycle components division has a wide range of product line-ups such as brakes, pedals, wheels, gears, chainsets, etc. and it represents 80% of the company’s total revenue.
Throughout it’s over 90-year history, Shimano has constantly been at the forefront, developing cutting-edge technologies and products. Shimano develops products that meet the global demand for superior quality bicycle components, fishing tackle and rowing equipment through original technologies and innovative ideas.
In 2017, Shimano had net sales of US $3.2 billion, 38% in Europe, 35% in Asia, and 11% in North America. Bicycle components represented 80%, fishing tackle 19%, and other products 0.1%. The company is publicly traded, with 93 million shares of common stock outstanding.
The company is one of the most popular bicycle gearing systems in the world. The system is most trusted and reliable amongst bicycle enthusiasts. The brand provides a variety of systems for mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, road bikes, and other bicycles.
In recent years, technology in the bike industry has been rapidly evolving. Manufacturers now use 3D computer software to design frames, make parts and components from specialized materials (i.e. ultra-light carbon fiber and aluminum), and conduct sophisticated tests to prove the quality (such as wind tunnels to test a bike’s aerodynamics).
Shimano is leading these technology innovations. Shimano has a robust R&D team (in 2014, their R&D cost was approximately 20% of their total SG&A) that focuses its efforts on product quality through technological superiority. Their continuous innovation provides bike riders with increasingly more reliable and efficient products.
How do they continue to innovate? Every year, Shimano dispatches its employees to work with bicycle manufacturers for several months to gauge consumer trends, as well as to understand the needs and areas of improvement. Additionally, they regularly meet with top racers to discuss future products and prototypes. Their openness to feedback and their eagerness to make improvements are what drives their innovative culture.
With its innovative R&D and operating model, Shimano dominates the global market share in bicycle components. It is by far the biggest manufacturer of bicycle components, so an equipped Shimano bike is simply a bike with Shimano components, such as gears and brakes.
While Shimano manufactures components for a broad range of bicycle types (including non-professional bikes i.e. city bike), its core target is the high-end market. Shimano has about 70% of global share in bicycle gears and brakes, and approx. 50% of the overall bicycle components market.
Shimano’s core competitiveness lies in its capability to produce extremely precise, high-quality, and high-performance components for road bikes and mountain bikes. They sell these items for a premium price to their customers. Shimano does not sell directly to bike users via retail stores, but to bike manufacturers that want to use Shimano’s components on their bicycles. Shimano’s components are compatible with most of the bikes of major bicycle manufacturers, such as GIANT and TREK, so Shimano has a wide customer base around the world.
The 2015 Tour de France illustrates Shimano’s competitiveness in the global market. Out of the 22 teams that competed in the Tour, 17 teams used Shimano components on their road-bikes, and the Tour winner, Chris Froome, used Shimano for most of his bike’s core components.
Their success lies not only in the rigorous R&D process, but also in the well-thought operational strategy. As in the example of Tour de France, Shimano provides its newest technology for bike riders and teams to use in professional races. This acts as a good promotion of their newest product, demonstrating the high quality performance and building confidence in the market. After debut in the tours, their newest technology are sold to customers to be used in high-end bicycles, charging them with a premium price.
After time passes and new technologies come out, they transfer (degrade) the product to a standard-class version and re-price it so that it could be sold to the mass-market. When a product enters this stage, Shimano transfers the production to their overseas factory, where manufacturing costs can be kept at a low level. This operational cycle (introducing new technology => selling it as a high-end product => transferring it to a standard-class product) takes place in approximately 5 to 6 years. The repetitive process of this operational cycle is what generates their revenues and sustains their competitiveness.
The components include crankset comprising cranks and chainrings; bottom bracket; chain; rear chain sprockets or cassette; front and rear wheel hubs; gear shift levers; brakes; brake levers; cables; front and rear gear mechanisms or dérailleurs.
These components create a more efficient bicycle-to-rider interface that demands less of your energy. This is achieved through low-effort and precise shifting systems and through linear response braking systems that deliver superior power and modulation. By using components that work for you, you can focus more on the task at hand riding your bicycle.
Shimano Uses The Technologies Highlighted Below;
The concept of HOLLOWTECH II technology is focused on producing a superior crankset that will maximize a rider’s power transfer.
Designed to meet the highest level competitive mountain bike racing needs with a second to none performance and experience.
System engineering at its peak. Each of the components magnifies the qualities of the others for an unparalleled level of performance. Optimizing input to maximize output.
Steps to achieve this technological breakthrough is the development of the component group based on the SHIMANO idea of perfect integration on the one hand, and the thought that an e-bike should still primarily be a bicycle on the other.
This article will review some bikes that are built with Shimano components and examine some of the components;
KESPOR S7 Bike
The bike is a folding bicycle designed to fold into a compact form, providing ease of transport and storage. When folded, the bike could easily be carried into buildings, on public transportation (facilitating mixed-mode commuting and bicycle commuting), and more easily stored in compact living quarters or aboard a car, boat or plane.
Folding mechanisms vary, with each offering a distinct combination of folding speed, folding ease, compactness, ride, weight, durability, and price. Distinguished by the complexities of their folding mechanism, more demanding structural requirements, greater number of parts, and more specialized market appeal, folding bikes may be more expensive than comparable non-folding models. The choice of model, apart from cost considerations, is a matter of resolving the various practical requirements: a quick, easy fold, a compact folded size, or a faster but less compact model.
The bike, KESPOR S7 is a 20” steel folding bike with fashion design. It is a 7 Speed folding city bicycle with Shimano Thumb Shifter, Shimano rear derailleur TZ-500. A foldable bike with a quality gear system that rides smoothly. Great for commuting, camping, RV, boating, this durable adult folding bike packs up so small, easy to fold and store in a small car, closet, office, apartment. S7 folding bike is fully assembled, a frame lifetime warranty, weight is 30 pounds, alloy V brake. It fits a wide range of riders with a maximum rider weight of 230 pounds. The comfortable seat easily adjusts to most riders ranging from five feet to over six feet tall. Tire 20”*1.5, 28H, chair ring 48T, freewheel 14-28T 7 speed, 500mm alloy seat post.
KESPOR Venture Bike
The KESPOR Venture folding bike is a 16 Speed folding bike disc brake with Shimano 8 Speed cassette freewheel, Shimano Altus 8 Speed rear derailleur, USA design. Easy to fold, easy to store. The folded size is 29 inches by 29 inches by 19 inches. The KESPOR Venture folding bicycle is great for commuting, camping, boating, traveling. Ready to ride, fully assembled, a frame lifetime warranty, weight is 30 pounds, featuring rear carry rack, front and rear fenders, magnet catcher, white protector, folding pedals. It fits a wide range of riders with a maximum rider weight of 230 pounds. The comfortable seat easily adjusts to most riders ranging from five feet to over six feet tall. Tire 20”*1.5, 28H, chair ring 42T*52T, freewheel 12-14-16-18-21-24-28-32, 8 Speed freewheel, 580mm aluminium seat post. Other benefits include;
1. Thunderbolt folding bike disc brake with Shimano 8 Speed cassette freewheel, Shimano Altus 8 Speed rear derailleur, double color cut design
2. Easy to fold, easy to store. The folded size is 29 inches by 29 inches by 19 inches
3. Thunderbolt folding bicycle is great for commuting, camping, boating, RV, traveling.
4. Ready to ride, fully assembled, a frame lifetime warranty, weight is 30 pounds, featuring rear carry rack, front and rear fenders, magnet catcher, white protector, folding pedals
5. It fits a wide range of riders with a maximum rider weight of 230 pounds. The comfortable seat easily adjusts to most riders ranging from five feet to over six feet tall.
KESPOR K7 Bike
This bike offers Shimano 7 speed aluminium for Adults with a rear carry rack, front and rear fenders. It is an easy folding city bicycle with 20-inch Wheels, Disc Brake. The bike is easy to fold, easy to store, easy to ride and 100% assembled.
The KESPOR K7 folding bike is designed with a more durable aluminium frame, disc brake, and easy folding mechanism system to keep the sport easy. The 7 Speed folding city bicycle is made with Shimano Twist Shifter, Shimano rear derailleur TZ-50, Shimano freewheel. This foldable bike has a quality gear system that rides smoothly.
Great for commuting, camping, RV, boating, this durable adult folding bike packs up so small, easy to fold and store in a small car, closet, office and apartment. The folded size is 31 inches by 14 inches by 26 inches.
K7 folding bike is ready to ride, fully assembled, weight is 31 pounds, featuring rear carry rack, front and rear fenders, magnet catcher, folding pedals. It fits a wide range of riders with a maximum rider weight of 230 pounds. The comfortable seat easily adjusts to most riders ranging from five feet to over six feet.
Reasons Why You Should Choose A Bike That Is Made Up Of Shimano’s Components;
In response to surging demand for global environmental preservation, bicycles now attract attention as the most eco-friendly means of transport.
1. At Shimano, they are dedicated to the supply of high-quality and high-performance components for different types of bicycles made in various countries and regions of the world, ranging from bicycles for the world’s top racers to daily users.
2. The DURA-ACE, Shimano’s flagship components in the racing world, always adopts their latest cutting-edge technologies like the Di2. The Di2 (Digital Integrated Intelligence), which was developed to enhance the potential of components by fusion with electronic devices, has dramatically improved shifting speed and accuracy.
3. Shimano has enhanced the product lineup, which was developed to provide more comfort and pleasure for commuting and shopping closely related to everyday life. The series features, for example, low maintenance by the internally geared hub and easy pedaling even while the light is on by the built-in hub dynamo.
4. At Shimano, they pursue the creation of new designs and easy-to-use functions by keeping one jump ahead of the users’ imaginations. They realize innovative new products excelling both in high precision and in durability by the metal-processing technologies they have developed for many years. This, I hope, will encourage more people to use bicycles resulting in the spread of more eco-friendly lifestyles and the promotion of environmental preservation. With this view, Shimano is developing and producing truly “Captivating Products.”
Shimano Products And Components Include;
1. SHIMANO TIAGRA FC-4700 10-SPEED CHAINRING: The Shimano Tiagra 10-speed chainring for the FC-4700 crankset is an original spare pacranksethe Tiagra FC-4700 cranks and can be used for the 2x combinations 34-50 and 36-52 (bolt circle 110 mm). The small chainrings are made of aluminum, the large ones of an aluminum-plastic composite.
2. SHIMANO XT PD-M8120 CLIPLESS PEDALS: Shimano XT PD-M8120 pedals is the perfect accessories to the XT M8100 groupset. The clipless pedals have been specially developed for use in Trail and Enduro applications. They have a double-sided binding and are of course based on the proven Shimano SPD system. An integrated cage protects the binding from impacts and acts as a guide, making it easier to clip in.
3. SHIMANO ALTUS RD-M310: The Shimano Altus M310 rear derailleur is the perfect replacement derailleur for bikes that have 7 or 8-speed gear systems. Designed to work with Shimano Revoshift, EZ Fire, or Rapidfire systems, this derailleur ensures crisp shifting performance on even entry-level bikes.
4. SHIMANO DEORE XT – PD-M8140: Two size options (SM and ML) for optimized support and pedaling efficiency. Concave platform for enhanced grip, long-ride comfort, and efficiency. 10 pins per side with the option of long or short pins. Strong, durable chrome-moly spindle with 8 mm hex wrench mount. SM: 100 mm x 105 mm for 36 – 44 GR shoe/ML: 110 mm x 115 mm for 43 – 48 GR shoe.
5. PD-M9100 XTR PEDALS: A firm favorite among many riders and racers, Shimano’s XTR clipless pedals may just be the benchmark of durability and performance. Sure, there are lighter pedals out there, but few will stand the test of time quite like the many generations of Shimano pedals we’ve used in the past. Now, with the 9100 series, those favorites have gained a few tweaks to make them even better.
6. SHIMANO XT 1X12-SPEED UPGRADE KIT: The Shimano XT 1×12 Upgrade Kit enables all those who do not ride a Shimano crank to enter the world of 12-speed shifting with Shimano. It includes the rear derailleur RD-M8100, the shifter SL-M8100-R, the chain CN-M8100 and the cassette CS-M8100-12 in the gradation 10-45 or 10-51 t. With the rear derailleur, you can choose between the clamp and I-Spec EV mounts.
7. SHIMANO SORA FC-R3000 CRANKSET: The Sora FC-R3000 cranks by Shimano – sophisticated technology for the leisure sector. The Shimano Sora FC-R3000 crankset is a 9-speed crank with two chainrings (without chain guard), which can be used well for Road bike training in winter or for the daily ride to work. The 2-piece design provides optimum stiffness with minimum weight and improved drivetrain efficiency. The crank arms of the FC-R3000 are made of aluminum, the chainrings are made of steel or an aluminum-resin composite.
8. SHIMANO 105 FC-R7000 11-SPEED CHAINRING: The Shimano 105 11-speed chainring is an original spare part for the 105 FC-R7000 cranks. It works precisely and quickly together with the other front drivetrain components. The 4-arm chainrings have an asymmetrical 110 mm bolt circle and can be combined into three different combinations. The versions 34 to 39 teeth consist of aluminum, 50 to 53 teeth of an aluminum-plastic composite. Of course, there are two different color options so that the chainring can be matched to the color of the crank.
9. SHIMANO SLX CS-M7000-11 11-SPEED CASSETTE: Shimano 11-speed SLX cassette CS-M7000-11 contributes to consistent shift performance and covers a wide range of applications with three different gradations and contributes to the consistent shift performance of the SLX groupset. Thanks to Dyna-Sys11 technology, the rider can always maintain a constant pedaling rhythm, which benefits the flow on the trail. The CS-M7000-11 is intended for 2×11-speed drives; to ride 3×10-speed, reach for the reliable CS-HG81-10 cassettes.