Urkai Inc, founded in 2011, is a family run business, owned by Kendra Davidson and Andrew Bowen, a husband and wife team and proud parents who have traveled extensively and realized that the sports oriented bicycle in Canada has served athletes well but has left everyone else without quality solutions that work for urban transport.
Why you will never find our bikes in a “bike store”.
We have exclusive distribution in Canada for all of our bikes. Although we keep getting requests from bike stores, we keep saying NO! Our bikes belong outdoors, where they can be ridden because that’s where they shine and make people smile. We think it is ridiculous that some stores don’t let you try before you buy (hmm…I wonder why…). We also think its ridiculous that the industry is so sports oriented they have made bikes so complicated that if you don’t have 4% body fat, wear full spandex, be an expert bike mechanic, that you don’t really belong in their store. Worse still, they take some of the same frames (which are especially horrible for women) throw on some cheap components and call them “city bikes”. Oh but wait, it gets better…they offer city bikes without fenders, cargo carriers, chain guards, skirt guards, lights, stand, lock and bell – so if you want to actually use it as a city bike you have buy the parts and pay to have them installed. Can you imagine buying a car and paying extra for lights, horn, trunk and door locks?
But wait, it gets better…they offer exposed chains, gears, brakes and other components that rust so that you can’t store your bike outdoors and here is the kicker, because all of the dirt, rain, salt are allowed to get into all of your components, your bike will require frequent servicing and parts replacement ($$$)…so who was this bike designed for?
We are here to provide comfortable urban transport solutions for the young, the young at heart, and families. When you are on a bike it should feel as good as it did when you were a child!
Urkai in the Media
Excerpt from the interview by Jim Duff, Editor of the Hudson Gazette
“We don’t believe in complaining when the simple solution is to just do it. And too often, as Canadians, we expect cash-strapped governments to do everything for us when really it should be a community-driven initiative. That way, we all get to enjoy the park and St. Lazare can continue to invest more in bicycle lanes.” Business today is only as good as its back story. Kendra and Andrew’s story is as good as it gets. Originally from Ottawa, they ventured out to Vancouver, but they couldn’t find the life they truly wanted, nor the family time they craved with their new son.
“Life had been passing us by, and both Andrew and I were unhappy in our careers, and feeling like we were missing out on our son’s life,” Kendra writes. “It was after touring around and spending time in the Netherlands, that we saw a moment. Going to a local park, seeing families pile everything from blankets, picnic to extra trikes and their children into a bakfiets, and then riding it right into the park or the beach, and taking everything out, the bakfiets never leaving their sight.”