Thursday, March 29, 2012

Tern's new boutique...

Head's up..
During a visit to Johnny Ng's shop in Bandar Utama, I was told that Tern, under K2 Asia is setting up a boutique in SS2, Petaling Jaya.
Having seen most of the bikes in Rodalink at Bandar Botanic near Klang, I'd say that few bikes with the exception of the Eclipse S11i and P8 actually allures me.

The entrance to the boutique in SS2, Petaling Jaya
I went to interview music composer Ng Chor Guan on folding bike commuting today.
After a photoshoot, I treated him to a cup of Green tea and exchanged some views on the folding bike scene in the Klang Valley.
I've known Guan since 2010 and have been following his adventures on two little wheels since he embarked on a tour of Europe last year.
The composer told me about a Tern shop in a double-storey house in SS2.
I asked if he's interested to check it out and so, we took off on a little adventure.
For me, its purely fact-finding. 
I am curious about this place.
When we got there, we had to remove our shoes. I hate doing that.. This is a downer if you are in a hurry and SS2 is a crime hotspot!

A guy who knows his stuff...
The boutique is located on the first floor on the two-storey house.
When we made it up the flight of stairs, we saw some bikes.
Not many, some Link C7, D8, P9 and a P24h touring folder.
A guy, who is probably in his mid-40s (urgh! If I guessed his age wrong, I might get lynched!) came up and greeted us.
He introduced himself as Kevin and told us that he is involved with Le Tour De Langkawi.
Then the guy went on to give us a product tour.. 

Mr Kevin showing off the Terns at the boutique
Close, but no cigars...
For product knowledge, I give Kevin an A+.
He seems to know a bit about Tern's products.
But he made a critical mistake by saying: "All our bikes are a complete package, that's why you don't see any accessories here.."
Tell that to a prospective customer who had never seen a folding bike in his or her life, you get away with this.
See, Guan has 6,000km on his Brommie and besides that, Kevin is also dealing with a seasoned foldie. Strike two.
I cited the Link P24h as an example.
When 'complete package' is what this guy is trying to sell, it came short of a front and rear traveler's rack.
These are standard fittings on a Dahon Speed TR.
The Link P24h is a touring folding bike. But, Tern has the right to specify that the products that they ship may differ than 'actual photographs'.
A complete experience means: Fenders, racks, bags and all the knick-knacks that comes with it..
I think with experience and dealing with more 'customers from Hell' the guy would be able to do even better!

Kevin giving Guan the low-down on the Tern Bikes
Grand opening
The boutique owner said that there will be a grand-opening in April.
"We are inviting the Media to cover this event and the people from the cycling magazine will be here too!," said the excited Tern man.
I was informed that the New Straits Times, through a famous sports reporter who specializes in cycling will be at the grand opening.
"Eh boss, you never invite Star ah?," I asked.
He gave me a strange look.
"Why ah? The Star reporters very lansee ah?," I taunted.
Well, the guy was sincere enough to admit that he has no contacts in The Star, which is the Number One English Daily in Malaysia.. hahahah!
All good things said and done, I think Tern Bikes is going to do well in the Klang Valley.
With the opening of the boutique, there are high expectations especially among the elite cyclists looking for a premium ride. I wish Kevin the best in this respect.. 
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