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Made in Europe: a project to identify technical textile manufacturers

More and more brands are starting the question the long-term viability of their overseas manufacturing facilities, and Europe currently offers new manufacturing opportunities to shorten lead times, reduce costs, and increase quality for one or more of their product ranges. To explore this potential opportunity, Outdoor Sports Valley created a working group made up of member companies with the goal of taking the first step to identify European clothing manufacturers. During the first quarter 2018, we launched a research project to index and qualify a broad panel of European production facilities. For this first step in an ongoing effort, we focused on identifying technical textile manufacturing facilities in Europe, especially those capable of making waterproof-breathable apparel. To view the results and the database, log into the OSV Member Area (Innovation & Sustainability / Tools and Info) to download: >> Country overviews (in English) where potential manufacturing facilities are located, >> A comparison table of the manufacturing capacity and ability in each country, as well as the information sources that allowed us to make our evaluation, >> The database of European technical textile manufacturers that we identified. We sent a questionnaire to the database of already pre-qualified facilities in order to gather more precise information on their production capacity (volume), certifications, etc. For your information, only a very small sample of the database replied to our inquiry. Following this first stage of the project on waterproof-breathable technical textiles, the working group will begin the second stage this fall to research the potential manufacturing facilities for in Europe for a different category of outdoor sports apparel. As an OSV member, if you have any questions or needs regarding this topic, please feel free to contact the executive team to join the working group.

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Activ'OSV: join us on July 26 for an OSV after-work party!*

Dear outdoor sports industry community,   It's time to take advantage of the long days and warm summer nights! Outdoor Sports Valley cordially invites you to its offices for a fun, relaxed, and social summer after-work party.   Join us on Annecy Base Camp's patio on Thursday, July 26, to chit-chat over a cocktail or an ice-cold beer "brewed in Haute-Savoie" by Brasseurs Savoyards. For those who show up on an empty stomach never fear, we will provide enough tasty morsels of French cuisine goodness to tantalize your taste buds.   Come enjoy the relaxed, festive atmosphere to quench your thirst and to network. Meet and mingle with other folks from the industry during a friendly game of Mölkky or ping-pong.   When? Thursday, July 26 – 18:30 to 22:00 Where? Annecy Base Camp, PAE des Glaisins, 12C, rue du Pré Faucon, 74940 Annecy-le-Vieux (France)   Interested in attending? Just fill out the registration form.*   *Event reserved exclusively for OSV members

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Market Intelligence France: hiking and trekking - all systems a go!

By Emmanuel Gravaud, Outdoor Experts The number of avid hikers in France continues to grow, and the outdoor footwear market remains strong. Here are the key market figures you need to know. The hiking market continues to grow at the same pace as a long multi-day trek: slowly but surely. Along with biking and skiing, hiking remains one the three key pillars of the outdoor sports market in France. The number of hikers is increasing a slow but steady pace. For the FFRandonnée (French Hiking Federation), growth ranges from 2.5% to 3% per year. By using a broad definition for hiking, from leisurely walks through the forest to the Annapurna circuit, there are 15 million hikers in France according to the 2016 BVA Union/Sports Ministry figures, and 18 million according to a 2014 FFRandonnée/Sportlab survey. More significant for the market, the number of truly avid hikers ranges from 5.5 million according to BVA to 6.5 million according to Sportlab. For both, France has approximately 1.1 million hikers who venture on at least one  "multi-day hike" per year. This core group of 1.5 million hikers uses guidebooks and are obviously very avid hikers. Over the last five years, from 1 million (Sportlab) to 2.6 million (BVA) Nordic walkers have entered the fray. The study conducted by France's Ministry of Sports indicates that 73% of hikers in France are over 35 years old, 27% are retirees, and 52% are women. However, we often forget that the avid hiker also participates in several other outdoor sports (3.7 on average): 26% road bike, 21% mountain bike, and 15% alpine ski, 10% snowshoe, 8% Nordic walk, and 4% trail run. The hiker in France is a multi-sport enthusiast and therefore purchases all different types of gear. The footwear market provides the key baseline figure. “In 2016, the hiking footwear market in France represents 237€ million in sell-out revenues for approximately 5 million pairs of shoes sold,” explains David Richard, sports market analyst for NPD. “Hiking is in 3rd place behind the leisure and running markets. The average price for a pair of hiking boots or shoes in France is 48€, which is higher than the average price for a pair of athletic shoes. The category grew 15% in 2016, due in large part to increased sales and a higher average price.” These figures do not include trail running, which NPD places in the running category. However, in a market trending towards low-top footwear, we observe that an significant percentage of trail running shoes are used for hiking and Nordic walking. This strengthens the position of trail running brands in the Top 5 of the “outdoor retail” panel, which places Salomon in the lead, ahead of Merrell, Asics, Columbia, and Adidas. The leading hiking-specific brands, Meindl and Lowa, are in sixth and seventh place respectively. When all systems are a go, the challenge for most key stakeholders is to give hiking a much more dynamic, youthful image. Clothing and footwear brands are hard at work. Through its Hike+ Out-Path range, Salomon now targets, “a younger, multi-sport customer.” A modern iteration of the X-Hiking range. Several brands, including Millet, are busy designing high-end technical products for the “fast-hiking” enthusiast, a segment that at present is a bit overshadowed by trail running and needs more work on the marketing side of the equation. This article is a condensed translated version of an article originally published in French in the September 2017 issue of Outdoor Experts. Outdoor Experts is one of France's premier trade magazines for the outdoor industry in France. http://outdoorexperts.fr/magazine/

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ISPO Open Innovation: the crowd-sourcing platform for intelligent product development and valuable market insights

ISPO Open Innovation connects brands with passionate consumer experts all over the world to test, share, and create ideas for sports products with the goal of gaining valuable consumer insights. We allow you to involve your customers in the development process and show you how they can become ambassadors for your product innovations. In addition, uncover hidden customer requirements, generate new ideas, and promote innovative products! From idea generation to testing the final product, ISPO Open Innovation enables cooperation with real consumers and experts from other industries. To learn more about the ISPO Open Innovation platform, click here. ISPO Open Innovation also offers brands the opportunity to contact numerous international retailers in order to receive valuable feedback on future products, strategic developments, new segments, and market potential via an online questionnaire. Our latest project is in collaboration with Salewa, part of Oberalp Group, combines both approaches: expert consumer feedback and retailer opinions worldwide. As a functional and technical mountaineering brand with a focus on their strong roots and core competencies, Salewa is a world leader in climbing and mountaineering gear, with a presence in more than 30 countries around the globe. With one important missing link, Salewa is thinking about adding headlamps to their wide range of products. They need information on how mountaineers use headlamps, the key factors in the decision making process to buy a headlamp, and where they normally buy this type of product. In addition, Salewa would like to ask retailers about the potential they see in the brand launching a new product category and what they in general expect from Salewa’s product range. Got your interest? Take part.

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Calendar

 UP! THE COMPANY MANAGEMENT FORUM

UP! THE COMPANY MANAGEMENT FORUM

Friday 21 sep
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THE EVENING BEFORE - High Five

THE EVENING BEFORE - High Five

Thursday 04 oct
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High Five Festival

High Five Festival

Friday 05 oct - Sunday 07 oct
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OSV EVENING SEMINAR SERIES

OSV EVENING SEMINAR SERIES

Thursday 11 oct
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DxO

DxO

Thursday 08 nov
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OUTDOOR SPORTS VALLEY - OSV

"Outdoor Sports Valley - OSV" designates both a region and industry cluster dedicated to outdoor sports. This region covers the entire Alps and ecompasses thousands of employees who work in the sports and recreation industries, the headquarters of most outdoor industry companies, and represents one of the planet’s most unique playgrounds.

The Outdoor Sports Valley concept, developed in Annecy in 2009, became an official association in 2010, and a certified industry cluster (Grappe d'Entreprises) in 2011 by the French state (DATAR). Annecy, exceptional geographic and strategic location, is the official capital of the Outdoor Sports Valley.

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