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  1. #1
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    Stunned - Cocalis departs

    I will be contacting Chris personally to give him my best wishes but I want to publicly say goodbye to a competitor and industry friend, Chris Cocalis. He and I have had great conversations on non cycling related subjects that I still remember anytime I hear his name. Always a man that would offer his hand in an honest gesture even though we were competitors. There are very few men in the bicycle industry that have worked as hard with an honest heart and treated his customers as fellow riders. I wish you the best in mental health in moving through the muddy waters of what must have been an incredibly hard decision to make. Maybe that is why I am in such shock, that I cannot imagine the pain of walking away from the company I started. With all you have done to create and nurture Titus and to lead it through so many years it will not be the same without you Chris, your impact was total and Titus's success yours.

    Best wishes

    David Turner

  2. #2
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    Chris's goodbye

    Dear Friend:



    The purpose of this letter is to let you know that as of June 30th, 2006, I am no longer with Titus Cycles. As many of you know, I incorporated the company in 1991, and have always had a strong passion for cycling dating back to the early 80ís. It has been my passion and attention to detail that has been the driving factor behind Titusí reputation for quality, innovation, and leading position as one of the premier high-end brands in the cycling industry.



    In 2001 Titus Cycles merged with Vyatek Sports (a composites technology firm). During the last five years with Vyatek and Titus, I have continued to grow Titus Cycles into a multi- million dollar high end industry leader as well as successfully bringing new cutting edge design and technology to the cycling industry. It has been five years since the Vyatek/Titus merger and I have decided to end my partnership with Vyatek and Titus Cycles, sell my interest in the companies, and explore new challenges.



    You can now reach me at:


    chris.cocalis@cox.net

  3. #3
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    Wow.

    Gotta be more to it than just "explore new challenges." I get a sense there was tension within the post merger Titus.

    I wonder what this means for Titus.

    Maybe you and Chris could team up and create the ultimate mountain bike.

    Edit: I'd like to thank Chris personally for his dedication in the pursuit of Mountain Bike design excellence. You are truly gifted and I can't see you out of the industry very long.

    I don't have my crystal ball with me today, but mergers like this in the bike industry have traditionally gone wrong (Ibis comes to mind). The signs are there, increasing output, the push to foreign outsourcing, increasing profit margins, eroding customer service, and now driving away the visionary. I think Pat Hus and others have grossly underestimated the loyalty we have to CC. Titus is Chris C. Titus IS NOT Pat Hus. Titus IS NOT Vyatek. My ML will likely be my first and last Titus. I have about 3-4 more years to see how Titus evolves before I'm in the market again.

    Regards,

    EndUser
    Last edited by EndUser; 07-06-2006 at 11:00 PM.
    My advice and $3 will buy you nothing more than a tunafish sandwich.

  4. #4
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    Wow?!!! I don't come by here for a few months and this is what I come back to. I wonder how the company is going to change.
    Riding slowly since 1977.

  5. #5
    carpe diem
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    I'm speechless. Best Wishes Chris!

    Chris, I hope you go on to do bigger and better things. My first true moutain bike was a Titus. I considered Titus one of the elite in the bike building business with great designs and some of the best customer service. Things have certainly changed over the last couple of years at Titus.

    Good luck to you and thanks for some of the best bikes around.

    Bob L.

  6. #6
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    Wow - that is very sad and shocking news. It is sad to see the founder of Titus leaving. This will not be good for Titus bikes.

    Best of luck on your new endeavors!

    I agree with Enduser - the two best bikes are Titus and Turner - it would be very interesting to see the two best industry leaders, DT and CC, design a mountain bike.
    Last edited by JTBAZ; 07-05-2006 at 06:09 PM.

  7. #7
    Paper or plastic?
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    Now, that really sucks.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  8. #8
    "El Whatever"
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    I don't know what to say... I'm completely stunned and speechless.

    Except for wishing Chris best wishes in whatever endeavour he may face now.

    Thanks, David, for the heads up.

    Kinda sad knowing from an outsider... but from all the outsiders, you're the only person I'd like to hear it from. I know your reputation and I turly respect you as a person and bike maker.

    Honestly, Turner and Titus were the only two brands I'd recommend eyes closed to anyone.
    Now...
    Thanks Chris for all your support, all the time.
    Godspeed!
    Check my Site

  9. #9
    the 36 year old grom
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    well that is sad......

    I'm not terribly happy with what I perceive as a turner victory lap. but so it goes.

    my bikes still rock and I hope to have the option to pick up another Chris Cocalis bike down the road. or even a titus.

    still, no man is an island. Donít dam the other contributors to Titus success. They work hard too.

  10. #10
    Bike to the Bone...
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    Wow! Too bad, really. Anyway, I think that sometimes we need to move on from something we started. It's great riding one of Titus bikes, it's, as far as I'm concerned, one of the top bikes out there. The company it's great, and I don't know what will happen to Titus now. I guess it will continue, and part of me would like that.

    I hope CC the best in whatever venture he decides to go. good luck!

  11. #11
    Paper or plastic?
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    Quote Originally Posted by demo_slug
    well that is sad......

    I'm not terribly happy with what I perceive as a turner victory lap. but so it goes.

    my bikes still rock and I hope to have the option to pick up another Chris Cocalis bike down the road. or even a titus.

    still, no man is an island. Donít dam the other contributors to Titus success. They work hard too.
    You summed it up pretty well. I'm not changing bike for a while, so it's no biggie to me, but it'll be interesting to see how/whether this will affect Titus.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by turnerbikes
    . . . Always a man that would offer his hand in an honest gesture even though we were competitors. There are very few men in the bicycle industry that have worked as hard with an honest heart and treated his customers as fellow riders. ...

    Best wishes

    David Turner
    David, I'm sure many would say the same about you. Thank you for sharing.


    I would be lying if I said all of the changes at Titus make me feel good about the direction the comapny is heading in but I will keep my fingers cross that the enthusiasm will not be lost in the growth.

  13. #13
    thats right living legend
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    Kinda Sucks...

    From whatevere it is that I know, and how I've come to understand it... Chris Cocalis is Titus Bikes...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by JTBAZ

    I agree with Enduser - the two best bikes are Titus and Turner - it would be very interesting to see the two best industry leaders, DT and CC, design a mountain bike.

    I could see other better synergies than a mountain bike. Titus builds some wonderful road bikes, it would be great if Turner did also. How about TI Turners. I doubt we have seen the last of Chris.
    Riding slowly since 1977.

  15. #15
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    I would bet the farm that CC has some type of "no compete" clause.

    You may have to wait a few years for him to resurface in the bicycle business...if he is ever able too.

    Mabey he will revolutionize motocross suspension...

    Just my thoughts.

    Jim H

  16. #16
    FM
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    Quote Originally Posted by demo_slug
    I'm not terribly happy with what I perceive as a turner victory lap. but so it goes.

    still, no man is an island. Donít dam the other contributors to Titus success. They work hard too.
    I'm sure that has nothing to do with it. Turner is selling bikes like hotcakes- I don't think Titus was stealing any business from them. Plus, look at the way DT handled the hearse-link panic and Ellsworth rumours. Personally, I'm glad to see good will between Dave and Chris, especially since I also think of Turner and Titus as being top notch bikes- which is why both companies have gotten my business.

    I worked at an indy frame shop for years, it was a real eye-opener to see how hard it is to make a profit selling high-end frames. Especially Ti Road stuff, there are so many companies oferring ti frames now, and they are not cheap to make. Seems to me that Titus took a gamble by going overseas and expanding their product line, probably to hopefully increase profits. Just like specialized has done years ago. Well, maybe Chris didn't like the direction it was heading towards. Fair enough. Personally I would prefer to see Titus foster their high-end market share by offering more size and finish options on the alu. motolite, even if the cost goes up. And also, get that buck60 out! But instead there's seatposts and stems which nobody seems stoked about.

    Perhaps the Titus crew are reading this- hopefully so. MTBR is a great way for MFG's to talk to their potential customers. Dave Turner, I really like that you post here, as you said, it's a reminder that you are concerned about riders & riding first, the business of manufacturing bikes second. If the riders get what they want at reasonable prices then the potential to make a profit should fall into place.

  17. #17
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    Bonking ... not feelin' well Oh no, say it ain't SOOOO!

    Quote Originally Posted by turnerbikes
    Dear Friend:



    The purpose of this letter is to let you know that as of June 30th, 2006, I am no longer with Titus Cycles. As many of you know, I incorporated the company in 1991, and have always had a strong passion for cycling dating back to the early 80ís. It has been my passion and attention to detail that has been the driving factor behind Titusí reputation for quality, innovation, and leading position as one of the premier high-end brands in the cycling industry.



    In 2001 Titus Cycles merged with Vyatek Sports (a composites technology firm). During the last five years with Vyatek and Titus, I have continued to grow Titus Cycles into a multi- million dollar high end industry leader as well as successfully bringing new cutting edge design and technology to the cycling industry. It has been five years since the Vyatek/Titus merger and I have decided to end my partnership with Vyatek and Titus Cycles, sell my interest in the companies, and explore new challenges.



    You can now reach me at:


    chris.cocalis@cox.net
    2000 Motolite, Riddler, Locomoto and a HCR.........a history I have truely enjoyed. I'm glad I got them when I did.....End of a special era. Good by Chris, and thanks a bunch!
    Dave
    Idaho Transplant (closet roadie)

  18. #18
    the 36 year old grom
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    Quote Originally Posted by FM
    I'm sure that has nothing to do with it. .
    there is nothing wrong with a victory lap....

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warp
    I don't know what to say... I'm completely stunned and speechless.
    Really? If you hadn't dismissed my posts earlier in the year perhaps you'd be a little less stunned and speechless.

    Chris started and ran a company until he entered into a partnership with another company. He's not the first guy to do this and leave and he won't be the last. I suspect he'll land on his feet and do fine wherever he decides to plant his feet. It can be hard to give up something you "made" yourself but to paraphrase the Godfather (because I don't know the proper quote), it's just business and not personal.

  20. #20
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    I've never owned a Titus, but I've seen the exemplary manner in which Titus treats its customers both here on MTBR and through the experiences of fellow riders. I have no doubt that this is due in large part to the attitude and perspective of Chris and the rest of his crew at Titus. I'm looking forward to seeing what he applies this same attitude and dedication to next. Hopefully, Titus carries on as it has, even without Chris, but I think some concern in this regard is justified.

  21. #21
    "El Whatever"
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    Quote Originally Posted by Braids
    Really? If you hadn't dismissed my posts earlier in the year perhaps you'd be a little less stunned and speechless.
    Well... time prove you right.

    But yet, it's kinda the same feeling I have for Michael Schumacher. I know he'll have to retire someday off F1... but the day he choses to retire, I'll be stunned and speechless anyway.

    Even if I knew for good Chris was about to retire, I'd be equally surprised the day he'd say "I'm leaving".
    Check my Site

  22. #22
    Natl. Champ DH Poser/Hack
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    if you ever met the man, you know what a loss this is. if you ever did biusiness with him, you know how honest and passionate he is. if you ever were lucky enough to have a beer or share a ride with chris and get to know him, you know how fine a person he is. all my respect my friend. good luck and stay in touch.
    No, I'm NOT back!

  23. #23
    I rode 'Whistler XC'
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead!

    If I wanted your opinion I'd give it to you

  24. #24
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    Thanks for the heads-up Dave, and thanks for verifying my positive impressions of Chris.

    Interesting thing, watching the evolution of companies and those who founded them. WTB and Salsa and Moots and Ibis and now Titus. In many cases it takes one kind of person to grow the cow, and a very different type to milk it.

    I join you in wishing him the best.

  25. #25
    Get out of town!
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    Quote Originally Posted by AkDave
    2000 Motolite, Riddler, Locomoto and a HCR.........a history I have truely enjoyed. I'm glad I got them when I did.....End of a special era. Good by Chris, and thanks a bunch!
    Dave
    The same thought crossed my mind briefly while reading this. We now will have Titus Bikes BCE, and Titus Bikes AD (after departure).

    Either way, I'm sure Titus will continue to make the same quality bikes they always have and they will still get a serious look from me in another few years or so when I am looking for another ride. Right now, I am hot and heavy with my Racer X
    "You can't discern by calculating in your mind how it will work. You have to feel how it rides differently to understand."

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