Shimano Corp., founded in 1921 and headquartered in Osaka, Japan, is a global leader in the manufacture and distribution of bicycling and sport fishing equipment. The company operates a global dealer network. As a result of its consistent growth, Shimano is “always looking for new dealers,” says trade specialist James Peterson at Shimano North America. Peterson and three counterparts oversee a national team of local representatives who, in turn, oversee local dealers.
The process of becoming a Shimano dealer is fairly simple and straightforward.
Contact Shimano, either by phone or via their website, and request a dealer application. Specify whether you're interested in becoming a bicycling or fishing dealer. You cannot be both.
A Shimano representative will e-mail you a credit application. Upon your completion of it, a credit check will be undertaken.
Upon approval of your credit application, a local representative in your market will visit your brick-and-mortar business location to make sure it exists and meets basic company requirements.
Upon his or her assessment of your credit score, physical location, references and overall suitability, your local market representative will recommend to the company that you be accepted or rejected.
Upon the recommendation of your local market representative, you will be issued a dealer account number. You can then order products. If your credit was good, there is no cash deposit required. Products are delivered on "net 60 day" terms. If your credit was not good, but you are still approved as a dealer, you must pay cash on delivery (COD) for the first year.
To increase your likelihood of success, have strong references across a range of disciplines. For example, a supplier, customer, banker and accountant together provide a well-rounded perspective on you and your business.
Make sure there is not already a Shimano dealer near your place of business. "We want new dealers, but we don't want them too close to each other," says Shimano North America trade specialist James Petersen.