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Old 07-11-2006, 08:40 AM   #61
Steverino
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OK I am officially confused and need for Klaus and Dirk to post a unified response before I can commit to spending $1500 +/- with either of them.

Want to try Wilbers and would if this was not clouded in contreversy (sp).

Why did Penske stop making GS shocks?
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Old 07-11-2006, 08:54 AM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steverino
Why did Penske stop making GS shocks?
Penske was tired of dealing with the BMW market. Only Andrew has been able to get them to reconsider their decision.

I'll PM you Klaus's phone number so you can get an answer for us.
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Old 07-11-2006, 08:57 AM   #63
azabeemerboy
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This thread is out of control. Confirm with Klaus that he services Wilbers bought from the factory and go for it??
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Old 07-11-2006, 09:18 AM   #64
nachtflug
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kixtand
got my Wilbers thru the normal US channels,
the goat, witch doctor and the ouija board?
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Old 07-11-2006, 09:27 AM   #65
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If I make a phone call it is going to be to Traxxion Dynamics and order a set of Ohlins.
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Old 07-11-2006, 09:43 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nachtflug
the goat, witch doctor and the ouija board?
Nope, just the goat and ouija board; the witch doctor was sick the day I ordered mine.
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Old 07-11-2006, 09:54 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kixtand
Nope, just the goat and ouija board; the witch doctor was sick the day I ordered mine.
wasn't his half brother covering sales for that day?
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Old 07-11-2006, 10:49 AM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdiaz
Penske was tired of dealing with the BMW market. Only Andrew has been able to get them to reconsider their decision.

I've got the Penske rear for my 1150 in my hands right now but the front shocks are still 4-6 weeks out due to the manufacturing of the new shaft extensions.

Pretty sweet...

This whole deal sounds like Wilbers in Germany is not letting Klaus be exclusive anymore but who knows. That would suck for Klaus as he has worked very hard to get the brand to where it is.

A
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Old 07-11-2006, 11:07 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azabeemerboy
This thread is out of control. Confirm with Klaus that he services Wilbers bought from the factory and go for it??
I have given Klaus ample time to respond to this thread as he said he would. The reason I posted my warning to prospective participants in the group buy was that I contacted Klaus just to ensure that I would have a U.S. P.O.C. for any warranty or maintenance issues that I might have. He told me in plain english and in no uncertain terms that he services wilbers shocks for HIS CUSTOMERS and anyone in the U.S. who did not buy shocks FROM HIM could return them to wherever they got them for servicing, maintenance and warranty issues. To his understanding there were duties or taxes to ship to Germany that would negate any savings on the initial purchase if you ever need work done on them. I called him thinking that he would just give his blessing etc.. but after my conversation with him I decided to go with another manufacturer in order to avoid any problems with disappearing service centers that may not be there when I need them later on.
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Old 07-11-2006, 11:40 AM   #70
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Statement

Members of the ADV Rider Forum.

My name is Klaus Huenecke and I am the owner/operator of Wilbers USA, or as it is legally known: EPM dba RUN-N-LITES and Wilbers USA.

I would like to give you the following statement as my response to the situation on the ADV forum, as well as on other sites. I will only come on to this site once, so do not be afraid of an ongoing discussion taking up your time. It is a little lengthy, but I feel you need to know the history to understand what is happening and to draw your own conclusion.

I did get in touch with Mr. Wilbers back in Sept 2001, after a friend pointed me to the Wilbers website, saying that it looked like a good product, but without a US dealer. I expressed my interest in representing Wilbers in the US, was accepted, and sold the very first sets two weeks later to friends within the BMW community.

Through my other product line, RUN-N-LITES, I had most of my contacts within the BMW community. I visited BMW rallies, knew the dealers, advertised in the RA OL and BMW ON and began marketing the Wilbers products through theses channels.

The customers liked the product, liked dealing with me (I have several testimonials going back to the early days), and the business grew. I was lucky to be able to increase sales by well over 100% every year. The total sales for 06’ by the end of June equaled the 05 sales the end of December. So we were on our way to probably achieve another increase of close to 100%.

I was congratulated every year by Mr. Wilbers and he wished me well for the next year in our final phone call to close out the year.

I never had a written contract with the factory. When I asked for one I was told that the “good old German way” of doing business – by a handshake – would suffice and would be honored.

I held the Wilbers flag and name up high, had my own website designed, and translated and printed sales information in English for my customers in the US. The factory did not have anything in English nor did they provide anything to me to support my efforts in increasing the market shares.

After visiting the Dealer Expo in Indianapolis in 2005, where we exhibited the Wilbers products at our own expense (approx. $ 10,000), Mr. Wilbers came over to see what the Expo was about. He became very interested in the annual M/C sales figures for the US. After all, close to 1 Million new sales per year is impressive.

In January 06’ I was told that Wilbers Products would design a new web site in English and would begin marketing the products directly to the US. I was also told that the factory would continue supplying me with their products and information to support my customers.

A combined advertising campaign to be shared 50/50 and to be run in other publications like Cycle World, Rider, Motorcyclist etc., was abandoned. I had however already signed Ad contracts which I now had to honor. Wilbers products decided to run their own campaign, in the same magazines, in the same size, to promote their new website, with the effect that you have two Wilbers ads on opposing sides sometimes.

One of the reasons for the direct marketing effort and new website, as I was told, was that I am too BMW heavy and would not be doing enough for the Sport-bike market segment.

I am quite happy dealing with the BMW folks and hope to continue this for a long time to come.

I am attending the BMW Rally in Vermont next week, where we will be installing a number of shocks that have been ordered in advance. We will be holding a seminar on suspension, and I donated a “Grand Prize” in the form of a set of BMW shocks for the bike of the lucky winner.
I will also be offering a discount on orders placed with me during the show.

My sales prices are calculated based on the purchasing price, the transportation expense to get them here including duties and handling, my operating expenses and a margin that allows me to pay my bills and makes it worth my effort. I do support dealers who order their shocks with me and expect a dealer discount, so that you can go to your local dealer order the shocks for the new bike and have them install it for you.
My sales price as of this moment does include a first “free” service after approx. 20,000 miles within the Warranty Period. This of course applies to my sales only, and the customer is responsible for S&H back and forth.
Paid services will be done for everyone at a fixed rate, plus S&H and extra charges for cleaning dirty shocks or repair damages that have nothing to do with warranty.

Warranty service for my customers will be done swiftly, at no cost to the customer other then S&H, as before. Warranty service for items that I did not sell is a different issue and needs to be negotiated. The factory has not approached me with a final offer to compensate me for time and material. It has been discussed loosely but that was it. To say that I am contractually obligated is not correct.
Every warranty so far, or mistakes that have been made by the factory (and this is not a criticism or blackmailing, mistakes happen everywhere whether you work with your hands or your head) I have to pay for the items first, or I have to send it back to the factory at my cost.
To send something back to Germany for repair or whatever is price prohibitive, simply because German customs want to see an invoice of full value with it so that they can apply VAT and duty. If you use a courier you will not get any of your money back when it is being shipped back to you simply because they do not keep a record of it and can not present the incoming paperwork at the time of export. If you use a licensed broker, he can present the paperwork, but you pay dearly for his services. Our friends in Canada can attest to that.

I have stayed away from special interest groups, forums, and websites that do not offer a paid advertising area, because of ethics. I do not believe that it is correct to advertise as a manufacturer or dealer on a forum no matter what incentives it offers to the members. If a member of the site takes matters into his or her hands and puts a group together, and then approaches the dealer for a group buy, yes, I am all for it and will jump on the bandwagon, but blatantly saying: “Hi, I am so and so and offer this great product at XX% discount to you”, always asks for trouble. The group buy that was done a few months ago on the ADV forum was initiated by a member of your site and not by me. Other group buys I did in the past were initiated by the webmaster or moderator and not by me.

Because the damage is done, I am going to give you my sales price for comparison reasons now.
A set of shocks, to replace what you have on your bike, with exactly the same adjustments as you have now, is – undiscounted – shipped to you in the US for $ 1,098.00. This price includes the new offer for a free 1st service within the warranty period mentioned above.

One other comment was made on the delivery and I would like to respond to that. I was also told that the delivery is 14 days, but 14 days does not equal 2 weeks, because in the Wilbers terminology, at least to me, it is 14 working days = 1 day short of 3 weeks.
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Old 07-11-2006, 11:47 AM   #71
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Thanks for the comprehensive response Klaus!
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Old 07-11-2006, 12:04 PM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WilbersUSA/Klaus
Members of the ADV Rider Forum.

My name is Klaus Huenecke and I am the owner/operator of Wilbers USA, or as it is legally known: EPM dba RUN-N-LITES and Wilbers USA.

I would like to give you the following statement as my response to the situation on the ADV forum, as well as on other sites. I will only come on to this site once, so do not be afraid of an ongoing discussion taking up your time. It is a little lengthy, but I feel you need to know the history to understand what is happening and to draw your own conclusion.

I did get in touch with Mr. Wilbers back in Sept 2001, after a friend pointed me to the Wilbers website, saying that it looked like a good product, but without a US dealer. I expressed my interest in representing Wilbers in the US, was accepted, and sold the very first sets two weeks later to friends within the BMW community.

Through my other product line, RUN-N-LITES, I had most of my contacts within the BMW community. I visited BMW rallies, knew the dealers, advertised in the RA OL and BMW ON and began marketing the Wilbers products through theses channels.

The customers liked the product, liked dealing with me (I have several testimonials going back to the early days), and the business grew. I was lucky to be able to increase sales by well over 100% every year. The total sales for 06’ by the end of June equaled the 05 sales the end of December. So we were on our way to probably achieve another increase of close to 100%.

I was congratulated every year by Mr. Wilbers and he wished me well for the next year in our final phone call to close out the year.

I never had a written contract with the factory. When I asked for one I was told that the “good old German way” of doing business – by a handshake – would suffice and would be honored.

I held the Wilbers flag and name up high, had my own website designed, and translated and printed sales information in English for my customers in the US. The factory did not have anything in English nor did they provide anything to me to support my efforts in increasing the market shares.

After visiting the Dealer Expo in Indianapolis in 2005, where we exhibited the Wilbers products at our own expense (approx. $ 10,000), Mr. Wilbers came over to see what the Expo was about. He became very interested in the annual M/C sales figures for the US. After all, close to 1 Million new sales per year is impressive.

In January 06’ I was told that Wilbers Products would design a new web site in English and would begin marketing the products directly to the US. I was also told that the factory would continue supplying me with their products and information to support my customers.

A combined advertising campaign to be shared 50/50 and to be run in other publications like Cycle World, Rider, Motorcyclist etc., was abandoned. I had however already signed Ad contracts which I now had to honor. Wilbers products decided to run their own campaign, in the same magazines, in the same size, to promote their new website, with the effect that you have two Wilbers ads on opposing sides sometimes.

One of the reasons for the direct marketing effort and new website, as I was told, was that I am too BMW heavy and would not be doing enough for the Sport-bike market segment.

I am quite happy dealing with the BMW folks and hope to continue this for a long time to come.

I am attending the BMW Rally in Vermont next week, where we will be installing a number of shocks that have been ordered in advance. We will be holding a seminar on suspension, and I donated a “Grand Prize” in the form of a set of BMW shocks for the bike of the lucky winner.
I will also be offering a discount on orders placed with me during the show.

My sales prices are calculated based on the purchasing price, the transportation expense to get them here including duties and handling, my operating expenses and a margin that allows me to pay my bills and makes it worth my effort. I do support dealers who order their shocks with me and expect a dealer discount, so that you can go to your local dealer order the shocks for the new bike and have them install it for you.
My sales price as of this moment does include a first “free” service after approx. 20,000 miles within the Warranty Period. This of course applies to my sales only, and the customer is responsible for S&H back and forth.
Paid services will be done for everyone at a fixed rate, plus S&H and extra charges for cleaning dirty shocks or repair damages that have nothing to do with warranty.

Warranty service for my customers will be done swiftly, at no cost to the customer other then S&H, as before. Warranty service for items that I did not sell is a different issue and needs to be negotiated. The factory has not approached me with a final offer to compensate me for time and material. It has been discussed loosely but that was it. To say that I am contractually obligated is not correct.
Every warranty so far, or mistakes that have been made by the factory (and this is not a criticism or blackmailing, mistakes happen everywhere whether you work with your hands or your head) I have to pay for the items first, or I have to send it back to the factory at my cost.
To send something back to Germany for repair or whatever is price prohibitive, simply because German customs want to see an invoice of full value with it so that they can apply VAT and duty. If you use a courier you will not get any of your money back when it is being shipped back to you simply because they do not keep a record of it and can not present the incoming paperwork at the time of export. If you use a licensed broker, he can present the paperwork, but you pay dearly for his services. Our friends in Canada can attest to that.

I have stayed away from special interest groups, forums, and websites that do not offer a paid advertising area, because of ethics. I do not believe that it is correct to advertise as a manufacturer or dealer on a forum no matter what incentives it offers to the members. If a member of the site takes matters into his or her hands and puts a group together, and then approaches the dealer for a group buy, yes, I am all for it and will jump on the bandwagon, but blatantly saying: “Hi, I am so and so and offer this great product at XX% discount to you”, always asks for trouble. The group buy that was done a few months ago on the ADV forum was initiated by a member of your site and not by me. Other group buys I did in the past were initiated by the webmaster or moderator and not by me.

Because the damage is done, I am going to give you my sales price for comparison reasons now.
A set of shocks, to replace what you have on your bike, with exactly the same adjustments as you have now, is – undiscounted – shipped to you in the US for $ 1,098.00. This price includes the new offer for a free 1st service within the warranty period mentioned above.

One other comment was made on the delivery and I would like to respond to that. I was also told that the delivery is 14 days, but 14 days does not equal 2 weeks, because in the Wilbers terminology, at least to me, it is 14 working days = 1 day short of 3 weeks.
No edit, just easier to read.
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Old 07-11-2006, 12:06 PM   #73
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Shit, I spoke too soon!
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Old 07-11-2006, 12:14 PM   #74
SQD8R
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsquared
Shit, I spoke too soon!
not really

Quote:
I am attending the BMW Rally in Vermont next week, where we will be installing a number of shocks that have been ordered in advance. We will be holding a seminar on suspension, and I donated a “Grand Prize” in the form of a set of BMW shocks for the bike of the lucky winner.
I will also be offering a discount on orders placed with me during the show.
Thx Klaus,

Much appreciated. It's actions like this that will hopefully ensure your future success in Wilburs or whatever other products you delve in. See you @ the rally. I'll be attending the seminar.
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Old 07-11-2006, 12:39 PM   #75
westnash
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Now Klaus speaks. I don't blame the company for wanting to increase market share and if Klaus was unwilling or unable to expand beyonf BMW's then then Wilbers shoul use other means to reach it. Maybe Klaus is trying to make more mark up than necessary because of low volume. Wilbers would have been smarter to give him 90 days or 6 months notice that they would be taking over the North American distribution themself, as is done in many businesses. Or give Klaus an exclusive on the BMW shocks.

If Wilbers product has to have service and it has to go to Germany it will be a PITA that will likely kill their effort or they will need another Klaus.
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