Montague Corporation: Unfolding the Future in Cycling

Posted: 9 Jun 2010 Last revised: 10 Jun 2010

See all articles by Mary Tripsas

Mary Tripsas

Boston College; Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit

Date Written: July 16, 2008


Montague has developed a major innovation that creates a new sub-category in the bicycle industry: a full-sized, high-quality bicycle that folds. In contrast to existing small-wheeled folding bicycles that are portable, but with inferior performance characteristics, the Montague folding bicycle has the look, feel, and performance of a standard bicycle. However, while the firm has experienced notable success since its founding, it has yet to achieve widespread adoption of its innovation. What should the firm do to increase penetration? How can Montague overcome the reputation of folding bicycles as inferior performers and convince consumers, dealers, and others of its bicycle's quality? How can the firm get consumers to even notice the innovation when the bicycle looks just like a regular bicycle? In other words, how can Montague balance the need to look like a regular bicycle in order to achieve legitimacy with the need to signal value by looking different? What market segment should Montague be targeting – customers looking specifically for a folding bicycle, or consumers interested in a full-sized bicycle but for whom the folding feature might add value? Finally, should Montague license its technology to one of the leading mainstream bicycle manufacturers in order to increase adoption, vs. continuing to go it alone in the product market?

Suggested Citation

Tripsas, Mary, Montague Corporation: Unfolding the Future in Cycling (July 16, 2008). HBS Case No. 808-087; Harvard Business School Entrepreneurial Management Unit Research Paper. Available at SSRN:

Mary Tripsas (Contact Author)

Boston College ( email )

Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
United States

Harvard University - Entrepreneurial Management Unit ( email )

Cambridge, MA 02163
United States

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