It’s a lifestyle choice – make sure you make it

From Henry Cotton’s to Canterbury of New Zealand and Philipp Plein,with only a few weeks to go before the start of ispo SPORT & STYLE on July 8 2007, the show can boast an exciting range of exhibitors.
The completely booked theme worlds prove that the specialisation in the interaction between fashion, sport, lifestyle, beauty, accessories, design and music is convincing both national and international exhibitors to head for Munich. The high level of bookings with numerous exhibitors from different industries and the positive feedback in discussions with retailers also shows that the new concept is the right thing for the industry.

Retailers agree

Stuart Brooke – 18th Green commented: “As a golf brand, we usually go to Golf Europe, but it’s too late in the year – people have spent their money by then. This year we have opted to show at ispo SPORT and STYLE, as buyers will have more of an open book. It’s also a good show for us moving more into sport style arena, as we recognise that golfing is becoming a younger sport, with more pro shops being run by the next generation.”

Michael MacDonald, of Trespass added: As an outdoor lifestyle brand, we have an adventure/casualwear range that lies in casual fashion sector as well as the technical wear sectors.We normally go to the winter and summer ispo shows.”

I asked Michael what he thought of the show being re-branded as SPORT & STYLE: “It’s interesting. I’m not sure what the impact will be. The show has been getting more style orientated for a while now. Consumers know that they can purchase equipment that is stylish AND technical. Even the most traditionally technical brand’s know that fashion is a vital element in the design process.More and more people are getting out and about, spending time in technical clothing.Whether you are in the hills or on the street, you don’t want to have to buy two jackets when you can buy one that’s suitable for both scenarios.”

Retailers seem convinced too. “Like so many sports retailers we have seen the changes in the market and it is very important to have the sport style products that customers now expect from a sports outlet. Even those who come into our shops to buy equipment are likely to make an impulse purchase if you have a strong apparel collection on offer,” said Angie Sole of UK retailer Herbert Sports.

“Like many sports retailers in the UK we have chosen to specialise and focus on core sports and the new ispo show is going to be very important for us. There is more emphasis than ever before on the technical qualities of apparel and footwear, so the Performance sector of the show will highlight developments to us. Innovations such as wearable technologies featured within ispovision are also essential for us to see, with customers increasingly looking for kit that integrates with mp3 players for example,” added Angie.

New exhibitors

Among the most prominent new exhibitors are brands such as Ben Sherman with its current summer line, shoes and accessories; Henry Cotton’s with its combination of British sporty and purist American style; Pantofola d’Oro with its refined shoe collection, which combines Italian luxury with sporty chic, and the wellknown brand Camper.

Many of this year’s participants have been coming as regular exhibitors to the fashion city Munich for years. These include brands such as Bogner,Matador,Meindl, Quiksilver, Seafolly,Arena, Brax Golf, Luis Trenker, Asics, Chervó, Jack Wolfskin, The North Face and many more. Golfino is also participating again with its new golf collection at ispo SPORT & STYLE.As exhibitors at the winter trade fair for many years,Hummel,Reef and Spyder will be represented with summer collections at the trade fair for the first time.

A few exhibitors such as Asics are expanding their presence, by exhibiting in the three, theme worlds “performance”,“sportstyle”, and “ispovision” this summer. Drykom is exhibiting with a very special piece of its new collection in the stylish shop window gallery, the “Premium Design Tunnel” in the “ispovision” segment.

The new concept also integrates lifestyle-oriented partners into the trade fair. For example, the automobile company Volvo will exhibit its refined, trendy design cars. In addition,MAC, Sony BMG,Samova and Stilwerk will present the lifestyle topic to visitors.