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Marvel v. Cervelo

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    Marvel v. Cervelo

    Jeff Adams here - I'm posting under a different user name because of the events of the last couple of months.

    A lot of people have been wondering what is happening at Marvel.

    Christian and I are sad to report that we have lost the company in a hostile takeover by Cervelo Cycles Inc., the bicycle company that we partnered with. Christian and I are pretty gutted. We kind of feel like our baby was legally kidnapped.

    Rogue Wheels Inc., and the Marvel Wheelchairs brand was owned by Christian and I, and Phil White and Gerard Vroomen of Cervelo – we each owned 25%.

    On March 8th, Phil White of Cervelo called a board meeting, in which they told us that Cervelo wanted to “enforce their security”, meaning that they wanted Christian and I to pay them back all of their loan by the 19th of March, 2010. (It was originally scheduled to be paid back in 2014, but the agreement had a clause that said that they were allowed to demand it back at any time)

    At that meeting, Phil offered us a new deal – he wanted us to reduce our ownership from 25% each to 2.5% each, and told us that he expected us to work for free for the company for six months. At the end of the six months, he would decide whether or not he would pay us.

    His lawyer, Laughlan Campbell, who was at that meeting, told us that he intended to “scrub and flip” the company at the end of the six months for “tens of millions of dollars”.

    Christian and I left the meeting (and to our credit, we didn’t smash a single thing on the way out).

    On March 19th, Cervelo put Marvel into “Receivership”, which is the Canadian version of Chapter 7 bankruptcy, telling the Court that we were insolvent because we weren’t able to pay them back their loan. They then purchased the company back from the Receiver by making what’s known as a “debt offer” – buying the company back by offsetting their offer against what they were owed in the loan, but extinguishing any ownership that Christian or I had in the process. We tried to purchase the company back from the Receiver, but our offer (of cash) was rejected in favour of the offer by Cervelo.

    At this point, Cervelo Cycles Inc. is the 100% owner of all of the assets of Rogue Wheels Inc., including the Marvel Wheelchairs brand.

    To our understanding, Cervelo intends to run the company without Christian and I – we have no idea how or why they did this, other than to remove us from ownership, and we don’t know if they intend to honour any warranties.

    At this point, both Christian and I must distance ourselves from the company and the product – we don’t want to, but we have to make it clear that we can’t do anything to ensure the quality of the wheelchairs, and we’ve been warned by the lawyer for Cervelo that if we do anything to “interfere” with their operation of the business, that they will take legal steps against us.

    To be completely honest, we hope that they’re successful – the Marvel is a great chair, and we’re really proud of it – one of the things that we’re really worried about is that people who own Marvel M1 wheelchairs right now should be able to continue to get warranty replacement for parts and/or buy replacement parts in case of accidental damage.

    The debate over whether or not Cervelo can continue to innovate without us will be answered in the next very short while.

    Our intention is to start over again, this time with good partners – since the company went into receivership, we’ve been building, and we have a new prototype.

    Over the next short while, we’ll put our thinking caps on, and improve that design, and we’re confident that without infringing on the Marvel patents, that we’ll be able to come out with something even better.

    Phil can be contacted at philw@cervelo.com – Gerard can be reached at gerard@cervelo.com.

    You can contact Phil directly to ask about warranty issues or call the company at 416-425-9517, extension 2 for customer service.
    Last edited by JeffAdams; 1 May 2010, 2:42 PM.

    #2
    Sucks for ppl that own them. That chair will be lost in the shuffle, thats a given.
    Bike-on.com rep
    John@bike-on.com
    c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
    sponsored handcycle racer

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      #3
      Jeff I know why, GREED. I am so sorry to hear this. ou guys worked hard on the product. Your next venture will be even better.

      I will nver by a rogue or Cervelo product ever. This is so typical. How many other great innovators like yourselves have been pushed aside for profit. May they all rot in hell.

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        #4
        That is one f***ed up situation. Really sorry to hear about that. Good luck with the next venture.
        Standing up for our rights, one offender at a time!
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KH59mpTo5x8

        Follow me on instagram: mikeinbmore

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          #5
          That you guys have earned customers, goes without saying. Out with the old and in with the new.
          "I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it." - Edgar Allen Poe

          "If you only know your side of an issue, you know nothing." -John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

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            #6
            This is bullshit. I will never purchase ANYTHING from them, if they were the last chair mfg on earth. PRICKS. I also hope they have to opportunity to USE the marvel wheelchair for the rest of their lives...
            Maybe one day some kind individual will kneecap each of them at the very least.

            https://www.facebook.com/john.baxter.1213986

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              #7
              I'm having strange fantasies of youtubing the crushing of my Marvel at the local dump. Do I honestly want to be a rolling billboard for Cervelo by continuing to push their chair? Honestly, I dunno...I can think of lots of funny things to do to it.
              "I have great faith in fools; self-confidence my friends call it." - Edgar Allen Poe

              "If you only know your side of an issue, you know nothing." -John Stuart Mill, On Liberty

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                #8
                Wow. Sorry you landed in a den of vipers. Hopefully their "new" chair division will die a fiery death from backlash over this. Flip "this" you azzholes.
                "a T10, who'd Rather be ridin'; than rollin'"

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                  #9
                  I think they just shot themselves in the foot.

                  All the best with your new chair!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    First of all, Jeff, this absolutely sucks. I'm so sorry this has happened to you because I know how hard you worked for this. I am more than positive that Cervelo's actions alone will cost them the company when word gets out of what they have done.

                    I have a question though. When you signed the contract with Cervelo, did you have a lawyer present? If so, it seems like a huge oversight on the part of your lawyer to overlook such a clause, especially because the clause is essential to the formation of the contract. I'm assuming here that the clause was, in fact, overlooked. Had it been brought to your attention? If not, could you pursue any action against your lawyer for some form of compensation, because, due to his negligence, you lost your share in the company?

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                      #11
                      What is going on in the wheelchair business? Recently the Tailwind company was bought out, placing the chair in legal limbo, and now this. It sure does not bode well for consumers of the niche chairs.

                      I really feel bad for you guys. You did some real out-of-the-box thinking to create the Marvel.
                      You will find a guide to preserving shoulder function @
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                        #12
                        Damn it, this kind of shit pisses me off.
                        Sorry guys.
                        C 5/6 Comp.
                        No Tri's or hand function.

                        Far better it is to try mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure. Than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much or suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows neither victory or defeat.

                        Teddy Roosevelt

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                          #13
                          Jeff,

                          I'm so sorry to learn that you and Christian got sucker punched this way. I can only imagine how surreal this turn of events must be for both of you. I'm heartened, however, that you and Christian haven't lost your resolve and will forge ahead with an even better product.

                          I'm at a loss to understand Cervelo's logic. The Marvel M1's market penetration and branding was hardly deep enough that now would present as the ideal time to call in their loan and wrest control away from the two of you. I would guess that anyone who's bought a Marvel, or was considering to purchase one, knows at least tangentially who you are -- the association is that strong. Why would Cervelo deliberately cultivate such corporate ill will among a community they hope to market to? And that will be the repercussion of this.

                          Perhaps they're deliberately plotting Marvel's demise. Maybe they're in need of a tax write-off. Like I said, where's the logic to this decision?
                          stephen@bike-on.com

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                            #14
                            I'm not sure that CareCure is the appropriate venue for this ... we don't want to be brought into this legal rambling.
                            Roses are red. Tacos are enjoyable. Don't blame immigrants, because you're unemployable.

                            T-11 Flaccid Paraplegic due to TM July 1985 @ age 12

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                              #15
                              Wow just reading that makes me want to blow things up with multiple rockets.
                              Injured:10-16-04
                              C7/C8, T1 incomplete;


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