SplashMaps at the CycleShow

SplashMaps made an appearance at the CycleShow, Birmingham NEC.  I love this event; it’s a great way to connect with this ever-changing industry and there’s heaps of innovation plus loads of spectacle.

Firstly a sit down in the deck-chairs with my old colleague Alastair Tinker and Andy from the Ordnance Survey. They’ll pass along one of our Bob Graham Maps to someone who’s completed the challenge, their Principal Consultant Peat Allan.  It was good to hear the new commercial focus in the old mapping agency.  We’re already partners of the OS but it was great to explore deeper ways of engaging on their revitalised and increasingly independent leisure business.

The outdoor addicts at Active Traveller magazine featured some amazing Fell running feats alongside their Bicycle focus in this months’ issue.  Editor Neil loved the maps and will closely examine our Peak District Map.  Look out for his verdict!

Keith Bontrager discussed light-weighting with me!

Keith Bontrager discussed light-weighting with me!

I caught Keith Bontragers design lecture.  Inspirational!  He’s the trail bike rider who innovated the mountain bikes we see today from the husks of old bike frames and dirt-bike spares.  Keith pointed out the high maintenance commitment demanded by competition style bikes that now find themselves in the hands of consumers. In Q&A he agreed with me that there are way more cost effective ways of improving performance via weight reduction than simply switching to carbon fibre.  Like, for example, ditching the paper maps and the map carrying bumpf ;-).

The MTB dirt jumping with Sam Pilgrim and team was truly awesome and deserved a long gawp at the amazing indoor stunts.

I dropped in on Dennis Media to meet James Young.  He’d just taken responsibility for Men’s Fitness as well as the classy “Cyclist” magazine.  Where better for our latest media release as well as plan our winter advertising?

Matt hands me me membership goodies, I hand him our award winning maps!

Matt hands me me membership goodies, I hand him our award winning maps!

Then to the CTC!  I’d wanted to join the membership of the biggest cycling charity since I was asked to talk at their Southampton group meeting last summer.  And since then they are always helpful to our business having featured us twice and even having helped me and my gear return from L’Eroica Britannia in the Peaks all the way back to Hampshire.  Well worthy of a bit of membership and an explore of how SplashMaps may support their work into the future.

Then down to the serious business of distributors.  We’re keen on getting our maps seen in the best independent retailers in Great Britain in the run-up to Christmas.  Getting to know the right distributors is essential and I further cemented the efforts we’re making with Paligap and Madison.  Not sure which of these will get me the hooks into these the best… but we’ll get there.

Excellent show, possibly not as strongly attended as last year, but certainly a lot more energetic!  Exhausting, fun and a heap of new connections made!


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