Rapha is a boutique cycling apparel brand which has thus far not offered a range of products for mountain bikers.
Since its founding in 2004, Rapha has delivered stylish and functional wear for road and gravel riders, building a very loyal following.
In 2017 the company received a significant investment from American brothers, Tom Walton and Steuart Walton, grandsons of Walmart founder, Sam Walton. Their venture company, RZC investments, has given Rapha powerful new financial resources, to expand its business.
A huge benefit of the RZC Investments association with Rapha, is that Tom and Steuart Walton are both committed mountain bikers, having studied in Arizona and Colorado, home to some of America’s best trails.
The Walton brothers wanted in on the cycling apparel business and chose Rapha as their partner of choice. For the British cycling brand, they could not have hoped for better equity partners: people who love riding and have legacy business sense.
Rapha has confirmed that it will be producing a line of new mountain bike products for the 2021 season. This development is in no small part, due to the Waltons controlling stake in the company.
With Rapha’s U.S. office in America’s most cycling friendly city, Portland (Oregon), there is a likelihood that its mountain bike products have been developed with a strong Pacific Northwest riding influence. Some of the world’s best trails are in Oregon.
Although Rapha will probably focus its mountain bike products on a customer who is more orientated to cross country riding, instead of the sport’s gravity disciplines, the brand’s bold colours and ergonomically obsessed design will be welcomed by mountain bikers.
Especially those who are familiar with the quality and fit of Rapha’s road and gravel products, which enables huge mileages, in all weather conditions, with great comfort.