In recent years many outdoor brands have deliberately set out to be more fashionable, with their clothes now used regularly and not just for sporting activities. For many consumers outdoor is simply a lifestyle product, instead of a technical product for outdoor pursuits.
A number of factors are influencing the market including the rapidly growing e-commerce segment, innovation stemming from the very technical nature of outdoor clothing, the growing importance of sustainability and developments in high visibility materials.
Case study: Jack Wolfskin
The flagship German outdoor clothing company, whose products bear the famous yellow wolf’s paw symbol, is a good example of a business which has seen huge growth due to the rise in the outdoor leisure market. However, like many of its competitors, it has struggled against tough market conditions.
The sector is evolving fast as brands increasingly go direct to market and look to sell their products globally, while retailers also seek to strengthen their own brands. At the same time all brands need to constantly innovate to differentiate themselves. These changes are creating M&A opportunities as companies look to reduce costs, enter new markets and extend product ranges.