An overview of the ISPO Munich 2020 trends and highlights

The 2020 sporting calendar has already begun—there could hardly be a better time to hold ISPO Munich.

January 26 marked the start of the world’s largest sports trade fair where 2,850 exhibitors from 55 countries will be showcasing all the key developments from the world of sports, business and technology. The platform is the most important industry event for retailers, manufacturers and sports business professionals for exchanging ideas and information and networking. Even famous athletes such as Lindsey Vonn and Felix Neureuther will be on site. Not only will visitors enjoy wandering through 18 packed halls but they can also look forward to an extensive supporting program running all the way through to January 29.

Boasting a wealth of contacts, providing an industry overview and serving as a trend barometer, ISPO Munich hasn’t lost any of its crowd-pulling appeal even after 50 years. Every year since 1970, thousands of sports business professionals have been flocking to Munich and seizing the opportunity to showcase their products and services. This is where trends start, innovative developments are discussed, and partnerships are formed and maintained. The industry platform is an international event for the entire sports world – startups, SMEs and corporate giants alike.

More and more brands are signing up for the first time to showcase their products at the trade fair, with this year’s newcomers including Sony, with its innovative technical materials, and Save the Duck, with its vegan clothing range. For the first time, adidas Terrex is attending the trade fair. Other companies are making a welcome return, such as adidas and the world’s largest action sports company Boardriders, which will be exhibiting products from Quiksilver, Roxy, Billabong, Element, VonZipper and DC Shoes, as well as Postcard which sells exclusive fashionable clothing, sportswear and ski apparel.

ISPO Munich is making extra space available for a growth market: This year, Hall A5 is the Shoe Village. Exhibitors will be showcasing the latest developments in the booming shoes, socks and related accessories segment all under one roof. Anyone keen to find out more about running won’t want to miss the RUNNER’S WORLD running symposium on January 27 in the ICM (International Congress Center).

The Snowsports segment occupies five halls (B2 to B6) and will continue to be an interesting sector in the future in view of exciting innovative developments in cross-country skiing, sledding, skiing, snowboarding and winter hiking. This will further boost the already positive trend being seen across this sector, whereby approximately 3.7 million pairs of skis were sold worldwide in the 2018/2019 season—an increase of 16.9 percent (source: FESI). Since it accounts for 13 per cent of the country’s total consumer spending, skiing is also the most commercially significant sport in Germany. It is also a very popular sport: Most winter sports enthusiasts enjoy winter hiking and alpine skiing during their winter sports vacation (just under 40 per cent in each case). 16.4 billion euros are spent every year in Germany on all types of winter sports as a whole—that’s around 20 per cent of total consumer spending on active sports in Germany. Snowsports can cater for all age groups which is why they are referred to as “lifetime sports”.

As digitalization already plays a role for young people in the world of sports, esports represent a huge opportunity for brands and manufacturers to attract this target group and motivate them to do some physical leisure activities. Figures recently released by the World Health Organization (WHO), which show that almost 20 per cent of adolescents aged between 11 and 17 are not doing enough physical exercise and are turning into couch potatoes, make clear just how important this is. esports have been part of ISPO Munich since 2019. In Hall C6 and at the East entrance, visitors can expect a diverse esports program, including the MultiBall Hackathon (sponsored by Fun With Balls and Hype & Force of Disruption) as well as the ES_COM CUP X3 (the “Triathlon of the Future”).

The next ISPO Munich will be held from January 28 to 31, 2021. “We wanted a stable set of dates for the trade fair at the best possible time for the industry and have therefore honored the wishes of the majority of our customers,” says Markus Hefter, Exhibition Director for ISPO Munich, explaining the new date. A period spanning a weekend was also desirable in order to give smaller retailers the opportunity to take part in the trade fair.

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