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Industry Talk

International outdoor industry sets solid, new trends in Friedrichshafen

This year’s OutDoor saw 965 exhibitors and 21,412 trade visitors from 90 countries.

22nd June 2017

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Friedrichshafen


More exhibitors, more themes, and more than 21,000 trade visitors from 90 countries became part of this year’s OutDoor trade fair, which concluded in Friedrichshafen this week. The new show dates in June – one month earlier – were met with widespread approval and provided an optimal basis for the coming business year, organisers report.

“The Outdoor is an important marketplace and compass for the global outdoor industry, the 24th edition of the show confirmed its role as Europe’s leading trade show, with plentiful sunshine and a unique atmosphere,” said Klaus Wellmann, CEO Messe Friedrichshafen.

The show’s partner, the European Outdoor Group (EOG) industry association, also drew a positive conclusion. General Secretary, Mark Held said: “Once again, OutDoor was a very good show and delivered a lot of great content for our industry. The earlier date has proved to be a successful move, with a healthy number of visitors through the doors. OutDoor was very well organised and run by our excellent partner Messe Friedrichshafen, and we really liked the creative addition of new events and attractions during the show, which are adding to the value of a trade fair in a fast-changing world.”

“Exhibitors and visitors also benefited from some modernisations to the Messe made since the last show, such as the optimized air cooling system, and these proved to be very welcome.”

Earlier dates

“The earlier dates and schedule days have made the OutDoor show even more relevant. The opening day on Sunday started somewhat slower as it coincided with Germany’s Pentecost/ Whitsun holidays and the long bank-holiday weekend,” commented Stefan Reisinger, Head of OutDoor, at the end of the show.

This year’s OutDoor saw 965 exhibitors and 21,412 trade visitors from 90 countries. © OutDoor

“However, the new schedule was vindicated with visitor attendance distributed differently over the days compared to previous years. The following days saw stronger attendance. This demonstrates the importance of the outdoor summit at Lake Constance. We are looking forward to the 25th anniversary edition of the show next year, which also benefits from more favourable calendar dates.”

Exhibitors and visitors benefited from some modernisations to the Messe made since the last show. © OutDoor

This year’s OutDoor saw 965 exhibitors and 21,412 trade visitors from 90 countries. “The energy from it all – the organisers and also the visitors – has been higher than normal. That is really positive. We have had lots of interesting meetings, comparable to the years before. OutDoor is valid for us. I think the timing is a lot better. Also timing-wise, for purchasing, it’s an improvement, even though we don’t do a lot of orders here. It’s important to get people inspired and thinking about the new gear. OutDoor 2017 was energizing and very positive,” said Andreas Holm, Sales Director Thule Group.

Core topics and industry-related segments

Both core topics and industry-related segments were very well received by visitors and offered a clear guide to future trends. “With our four new OutDoor Plus areas: Lifestyle Collection, HangOut, Water Sports and Running, we were able to deliver a more comprehensive overview of the market and reach new target groups,” explained Dirk Heidrich, OutDoor Show Director, Messe Friedrichshafen.

OutDoor 2018 international trade fair will take place from 17-20 June 2018. © OutDoor

Runner’s World editor-inchief, Urs Weber, concurred: “By including running as a new core theme, OutDoor has demonstrated its good instincts for choosing the right trail. The way it was presented at the show, the wide-ranging offer from exhibitors and the positive response from trade visitors demonstrate just how much dynamism there is in the running industry. The freshly-launched Run&Trail Summit had over 100 visitors, including some of the most important running retailers in the sector – a great result for the show.”

In addition, the large number of highlights in this year’s programme included: widely-respective innovative designs honoured by the OutDoor Industry Award, well-attended OutDoor Conferences, training events such as the trainee tours and walk&meet tours for bloggers, and the Lake Constance micro-adventure experience provided a wide range of opportunities for visitors to acquaint themselves with upcoming industry trends.

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