Container #47, and a brand new country for us - Kenya!

We recently completed an unusually difficult container as our first attempt at used bike distribution in Kenya.  Let's just say it was a learning experience...

As usual, our customers donate their old bikes at local Mike's Bikes stores, those bikes are brought to our HQ in Novato, where they're loaded into 40' shipping containers as they arrive.  Typically, we gather up 450-550 bikes, seal up the container, and off it sails.  However, as we prepared to do this for our new partners, Cycloville Kenya, we were informed at the last minute "By the way, Kenya Customs requires that you conduct a pre-inspection of the goods here in the States."  Oh, well that couldn't be too hard, right?  Wrong.  It requires that the container be completely unpacked and offloaded so that each bike was viewable, and some bizarre and frankly ridiculous Kenya law requires that every used bike entering the country include a lock and a bell!

We very nearly bailed entirely on the Kenya project, but finally decided to power through and give it a go.  So we ordered 400+ locks, 400+ bells, scheduled the inspection, unloaded the entire shipping container one morning, somehow cleared the inspection mid-day, and reloaded the entire container in the afternoon.

We're still trying to figure out how to handle the logistics of this for the next Kenya container, but now, container #48 is loading up gradually and destined for our usual partners in Botswana.

More on our new Kenya friends in a later post...