Ribble Cycles race ahead with Sage 200

Huge growth sees bike manufacturer look to the future

11th August 2021

Founded in 1897, Ribble Cycles is a premium world-class bicycle manufacturer and retailer - designing and hand building bikes in the UK and distributed worldwide. We spoke to Melanie Stock, Finance Manager, about their recent decision to partner with Datel and make the move to Sage 200.  

Unique shopping experience 

Ribble is a digital first business with a unique DTC proposition and where their industry leading website is the home of their brand. The edge Ribble has is their team, who are all cycling enthusiasts and able to offer real life experience and feedback to their customers. 

All Ribble bikes are fully customisable, and with their online BikeBuilder, CustomColour, customer advice centre, and live one-way video with their Ribble Live Experts they hope to offer something no one else does. Their flagship showroom in Clitheroe, Lancashire, is an extension of their online shop, offering an immersive experience for customers. 

This dedication, combined with the recent boom in cycling, has seen Ribble experience huge growth over the last 18 months and hasn’t shown signs of slowing down yet. A large number of transactions usually means good news for a business, but because Sage 50 hasn’t been able to cope with the quantity, Ribble has been suffering from data corruptions. They also require better reporting capabilities and more functionality around the nominal ledger such as cost centre and departmental reporting. Melanie explained that these issues are the main reason behind their decision to upgrade their Sage system; 

“We see our growth continuing. Sage 50 is not coping well with the number of transactions, and it’s shown us how we now need a system that's going to be able to support us in the future.”  

Sophisticated reporting 

The company is embarking on a big brand campaign, which even includes national TV advertising and a dynamic retail roll-out programme to further increase brand awareness. In preparation for further growth, Melanie is keen to upgrade their systems so that they have better reporting capabilities and more functionality around the nominal ledger such as cost centre and departmental reporting, and is impressed by what Sage 200 can offer. 

“I’ve had experience with a few systems but I’ve always liked Sage’s interface. The team is used to it, so the transition will be smooth. Sage 200 is going to provide us with a granular level of detail, and end to end reporting that is going to be very beneficial.” 

The team approached Datel directly and soon had a demo. For Melanie, the solution needs to be right for the specific requirements of their business and Datel were able to answer all of their questions to enable the project to get started. One key requirement Melanie was delighted to tick off her wishlist was to ensure that Sage 200 could integrate with their existing operational system, and import sales invoices and purchases without the need for manual input.  

The team were also keen to ensure that Sage 200 would provide much more graphical and detailed reporting for the business and allow them to create ad hoc reports such as departmental, project cost and KPI reports. 

As they proceed into the scoping stage, we are continuing to support Melanie and the team who are currently working on transferring the initial data. “We have the templates now which we are populating. There’s lots of cost centres, and new nominal codes, making it quite a big piece of work but it'll be worth it in the end. Using cost centres and project codes is going to remove so many manual elements of our reporting and save us time.” 

 It has been a pleasure working with Ribble so far, and we can see that they are right on track for go live in September.