Innovations Threaten the Neighborhood Bike Shop

“The fact that these guys come here to me is a home run,” Mr. Sweeney said.

Velofix has over 80 franchises in Canada and the United States. The one Mr. Samson works for is owned by Justin Brundage, 46, an avid cyclist who also has a job at a financial services firm. Mr. Brundage leased two territories in the Philadelphia area.

Working with Velofix, Mr. Brundage purchased the oversize Mercedes diesel van, which was wrapped in the red, white and black Velofix logo and outfitted with a bike stand, tools and tool cases, trays of parts as well as accessories like glasses, gloves and water bottles. Velofix also contracts with about a dozen bike manufacturers to assemble and deliver bikes purchased online through the manufacturers’ websites.

It isn’t the only company taking this approach: Beeline Bikes in California also offers mobile…

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