December 11 2009.

Former Hein Gericke Managing Director Guy Mainwaring has been out of the trade for some 18 months or so, but has just announced that he will be back in in the trade in the driving seat at Held (UK) Limited from the start of 2010. Trader asked Guy for an update...

Having left Hein Gericke after 14 years service, 11 as Joint Managing Director I knew that moving away from the industry was simply not an option for me nor was the prospect of another executive position within an existing industry organisation.

I had long harboured the desire to fuse the sales and product management skills I had acquired with Nelson Rigg, Peter Gleave, AVA and Phoenix with the extensive retail expertise I gained at Hein Gericke and fully utilise them both by setting up for myself. Following a heads up from a long time contact with W L Gore and Associates that Held GMBH had just been granted a Gore-Tex garment licence, and that their current agency agreement with Keith Blair was coming to an end due to his imminent retirement the question of where to utilise those skills was answered.

I had long been an admirer of Held, one of the most successful independent brands in Germany. German dealers only ever have good things to say about the company, the products they create and the service they provide. The products have always been good and certainly one of the brands I felt the need to keep an eye on during my HG years - 4 consecutive Motorrad best brand awards in the glove category between 2006 and 2009 should make anyone sit up and take note.

A meeting with Held was quickly set up and it was immediately clear that this was the right opportunity for both parties. I loved the company and its people immediately. After over 60 years trading the company is still family owned and run. I have no doubts that the third generation now climbing through Held's management are every bit as committed and proud of the organisation as their grandparents Held's founders were. They believe in the industry, they believe in innovation, quality and most of all they believe in good old fashioned customer service.

The products blew me away, though I had kept an eye on what they were up to over the years I realised that I had not been paying close enough attention! The collection is vast and more importantly competent, providing outstanding value. There really is something to suit every biker, man woman or even child regardless of what, how or where they ride!

With the introduction of the Gore-Tex equipped Quattrotempi garment collection for 2010, I have no hesitation in declaring Held's 2010 range as the most comprehensive collection I will have EVER worked with and I include Hein Gericke's offerings over the years in that statement!

UK dealers can expect attractive trading terms, unrivalled choice, quality and value in all key product segments and the same high levels of customer service enjoyed for years by German dealers.

Held (UK) Limited is ultimately looking for trading partners keen to build a long-term, profitable relationship, not just dealers looking to capitalise short term on the popularity of a product test winner. We want to take the time to understand a dealer's aspirations and vision for their businesses and use our considerable knowledge of all things retail in order help assist our dealers to meet and indeed exceed those aspirations.

Held (UK) Limited take over existing accounts from Keith Blair on 1st January 2010, but are ready to assist new dealers to the brand immediately and can be contacted at:

Held (UK) Limited
Copthall Bridge House
Station Bridge
North Yorkshire HG1 1SP
Telephone: 01423 790 121
Fax: 01423 790 221