Ep. 38 - Adam McDermott (Linus Bikes)
12 years ago, I was still fresh from my move to Los Angeles when I started a fashion and lifestyle blog featuring mostly menswear, surfing, and really, just life in Southern California. One day, while strolling down Abbot Kinney in Venice Beach, I came across a row of about 5 bikes on the sidewalk, each hosting the name LINUS across the top tube in a timeless, San serif font. But these weren’t just any bikes. They weren’t mountain bikes, nor were they road bikes requiring a kit of spandex. Interestingly enough, they weren’t beach cruisers, either. They were (and still are) simple, really well-designed city bikes. Pre-dating the “Commuter” craze of the last decade, Linus bikes were often sold as single speed bikes, with swooped back handle bars, which made the riding position more upright and comfortable, and they came in colors far more interesting than just black or white. To this day, I get complimented on mine which I soon purchased after featuring Linus on my blog which is actually still in existence though all but ignored since 2013 and can be found at: www.screamingmouth.com. When I would feature brands, I’d email a link to the post to those companies, so my first interaction with Linus’s founder, Adam McDermott, actually took place over email in 2011. Funny enough, he and I had never met until this interview. Adam was born in South Africa, though much of his childhood was spent in Malibu as apartheid provoked his mother to move them to California. Adam started Linus through motivations predicated on lifestyle changes and environmental impact, something certainly resonating even more so today. I stand by the notion that Linus makes the most comfortable bikes on the planet, and also serve as an incredible value-add given their price point, so I was excited to sit down with Adam. What I love most is this is really a story of someone wanting something that they couldn’t find and they decided to just figure out how to get it done. I think a ton of entrepreneurs can absolutely identify with this mentality - with the motivation to keep pushing until the mission is complete. Today, Linus is carried in over 200 stores worldwide and is bolstered by quite a large assortment of bikes and accessories. This past Christmas, I actually bought my wife a Linus which has been instrumental during the time of COVID-19, as we’ve been exploring much of San Diego as a way to switch up our exercise regimen. I guess I can’t say enough about the bikes really, so I’ll leave it to Adam to share even more.