Sports Goods Retailing - UK - July 2013
“The sports goods retailing market is heading into a period of potentially significant change as the major chains look to step into the gap left by the collapse of JJB, the independent sector attempts to reverse long-term trends of steady decline and brands themselves begin to take control of their own high street and online sales channels.”
David Walmsley, Senior Leisure Analyst
Some questions answered in this report include:
- Has the demise of JJB left a mid-market gap to fill?
- Do retailers need to get closer to players?
- Where next for Sports Direct?
- How can retailers remain part of the club?
The sports goods retailing market was boosted in 2012 by a return to growth in sports participation rates (particularly among women and younger adults), which was a welcome counterpoint to the continuing squeeze on disposable incomes that has forced many people to economise on leisure spending.
However, early data from 2013 indicate much of the participation growth seen in the previous year may be an Olympics-driven blip, while the collapse of JJB Sports in late 2012 underlined the difficulties even the larger chains continue to face. Yet despite these ongoing threats, the leading retailers have ambitious growth plans on the table and the increasing interest of sports brands in managing their own sales operations is bringing another new dimension to the market.
This report assesses current patterns of UK adults’ spending on sports goods, examines the performance and strategy of the leading players in the market and identifies a range of potential responses to the main opportunities and challenges emerging.
This report examines the retailing by specialist outlets of sports clothing, footwear and equipment, which is defined as: sports clothing, (eg tracksuits, swimwear, hooded sweatshirts, accessories (gloves, caps etc)), sports footwear, (eg trainers, running shoes, football boots, ski boots), sports equipment, (eg tennis racquets, golf clubs and balls, trampolines, snooker tables).
All items of clothing and footwear that are specifically designed for sport are included, whether these items are worn when participating in a particular sport (described by retailers as ‘activewear’ or ‘performance’ items) or worn as casualwear. This includes items carrying a well-known branded logo and items produced under a clothing retailer’s own-label.
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