Outdoor by ISPO - the year-round platform for a new outdoor movement, combined with the largest annual international trade fair for the outdoor sector. (Z1401)

Tobias Gröber and Markus Hefter after the Cancellation of Outdoor by ISPO

Outdoor by ISPO Messe München

"The Support of Retailers, Manufacturers and Partners Has Top Priority"

Due to the spread of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and following the recommendation of the Bavarian State Government and the competent health authorities, Messe München is compelled to cancel OutDoor by ISPO 2020. Tobias Gröber, Executive Director Business Unit Consumer Goods at Messe München, and Markus Hefter, Exhibition Group Director OutDoor by ISPO, tell us how they feel now. But they also reveal what makes them confident about the future and how they are now planning the next steps.

The second edition of an event is always a challenge. After last year's premiere, OutDoor by ISPO project manager Markus Hefter and his team worked flat out on the 2020 show. However, due to the unforeseeable development of the pandemic and on the basis of the recommendation of the state government of Bavaria and the relevant health authorities, Messe München felt compelled to cancel OutDoor by ISPO.

Tobias Gröber, Markus Hefter, how are you doing after the cancellation?

Tobias Gröber: To be honest, it was one of the decisions in my professional life that affected me the most. The health and well-being of our employees and our customers has always been and still is our top priority, so of course we had to act. And of course it was important for us to provide clarity for exhibitors, visitors and partners at this point in time.

Markus Hefter: I feel like Tobi. We collected so much feedback from the industry about the first OutDoor by ISPO, wanted to make so many things even better in 2020 and then we had to cancel with a heavy heart. Because the focus is now completely different.

What do you mean by that?

Hefter: The Coronavirus pandemic has put many things into perspective and reminds us what really matters. When we look at our partners and the many outdoor companies from, for example, Italy, Spain, the UK or other countries, the first thing that matters is health and then the economic survival. The support for retailers, manufacturers and supply chain partners has top priority this year in order to - if possible - at least somewhat mitigate the consequences of the crisis.

We will start there and stand together with the European Outdoor Group by the side of the outdoor community.

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Are there any plans for that? What does that mean in concrete terms?

Gröber: We are of course in close contact with the industry and trade associations. Because, as Markus has already said, it's an outdoor community and not just any industry. The ISPO team and our partners from the EOG are currently asking how we can really help exhibitors, suppliers and retailers now.

Is it about the exchange of experience or knowledge? Is it about industry-wide alliances, in competition with other industries? Are agreements with retailers now the most important thing, or is there something completely different that is now the focus for the outdoor industry? Therefore we offer all partners from industry and trade to come to us with their questions, suggestions and ideas for cooperation.

Hefter: We are already working on comprehensive cooperation and new formats that will guide all industry participants through the difficult times in the best possible way. We currently need some time for this and will of course announce things as soon as possible. We have an extensive network and are convinced that, as a wide-reaching analogue and digital platform, we can be a good partner for all market participants.

Gröber: Even if we don't see each other in person for the next few months, we'll stay in touch with our partners, customers and visitors. The Coronavirus crisis is a turning point, but it already shows how valuable personal connections are. We are already looking forward to meeting everyone in person again. And we will continue to work towards this every day.

Where do you get the motivation for your constant drive?

Of course, the outdoor and sports industry will be changed, coming out of this crisis. But we are all convinced that outdoor activities and sports will become even more important. Right now it is becoming clear how valuable it is to be outdoors. Health was and is today more than ever an important asset. The outdoor and sports industry can make one of the best contributions in helping people stay healthy and fit.

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Outdoor by ISPO - the year-round platform for a new outdoor movement, combined with the largest annual international trade fair for the outdoor sector. (Z1400)

OutDoor by ISPO 2020 is cancelled

Outdoor by ISPO Messe München

Due to the spread of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and following the recommendation of the Bavarian State Government and the competent health authorities, Messe München is compelled to cancel OutDoor by ISPO 2020. This step was taken in agreement with the European Outdoor Group (EOG) trade association in order to protect the health of exhibitors and visitors. The next OutDoor by ISPO will be held in summer 2021.

“Under these circumstances it is not reasonable to go ahead with OutDoor by ISPO as scheduled—for health and economic reasons,” said Klaus Dittrich, Chairman and CEO of Messe München, who is responsible for OutDoor by ISPO. “We are now looking ahead and working together with the industry to organize a successful OutDoor by ISPO 2021.”

The decision was taken in close consultation with the European Outdoor Group, the OutDoor by ISPO Advisory Board and the exhibitors.

Mark Held, the President of the European Outdoor Group, said: “The outdoor industry is facing unprecedented stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We believe that cancelling OutDoor by ISPO 2020 will free up much needed company resources that can be used to support employees, retailers and other stakeholders along the supply chain. The more we can do now to protect everyone involved, the better equipped we will be once this crisis is over. Then Outdoor by ISPO 2021 will offer a key platform for the entire industry and will set standards for the economic comeback.”

A decision about the continuation of ISPO Digitize Summit, ISPO Textrends and Outstanding Outdoor formats will be taken at a later date.

Exhibitors and visitors will find further information on the latest developments online.

Outdoor by ISPO - the year-round platform for a new outdoor movement, combined with the largest annual international trade fair for the outdoor sector. (Z1303)

OutDoor by ISPO 2019 – Final report

Successful launch of a new outdoor era

Outdoor by ISPO Messe München

• 1.018 exhibitors from 35 countries

• more than 22.000 visitors from about 90 countries

• Industry is becoming more and more sustainable

With 1.018 exhibitors and more than 22.000 trade visitors, OutDoor by ISPO launched a new era for the outdoor industry from June 30 to July 3. Under the motto “There’s a perfect outdoor for everyone,” Europe’s largest outdoor trade fair was held for the first time in Munich. A spirit of new beginnings was perceptible at the premiere. A new, open hall concept, 18 focus areas inside and outside the halls as well as a far-reaching supporting program for trade visitors turned the fair into an experience platform for the modern outdoor world. The industry concentrated on one theme in particular: sustainability.

Klaus Dittrich, Chairman and CEO of Messe München, said: “The industry’s tremendous enthusiasm demonstrates the success of our new concept. We were able to keep and even exceed our promises from the run-up. Together with the industry, we have launched a new era in which the term ‘outdoor’ is no longer forced to conform to a definition written by the industry. Instead, it has become the collective term for the attitude of each individual.”

OutDoor by ISPO 2019 in numbers

1.018 exhibitors showcased their products and innovations during the premiere of OutDoor by ISPO. International exhibitors made up 84 percent of the total. Countries with the largest participation were Germany, UK, Italy, the Netherlands, China, Sweden and the USA.

More than 22.000 trade visitors from about 90 countries attended the trade fair. About two thirds of them came from countries outside Germany. Countries with Press release | July 3, 2019 | 2/5 the largest number of visitors were (in this order) Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, the UK, France and the Netherlands. The proportion of decision makers was 85 percent. A total of 87 percent of visitors rated the premiere event as good to excellent, according to official market research conducted by Messe München.

Like all events organized by Messe München, also the visitor and exhibitor numbers of OutDoor by ISPO are certified by the Society of Voluntary Control of Fair and Exhibition Statistics (FKM).

Inclusive outdoor concept attracts new exhibitors

Following the idea of freedom, open aisles in the middle conveyed the true outdoor spirit and served as a space for staging relevant themes. In addition, all halls gained a strong and consistent first row in the style of a shopping mile and offered more room for the presentations of the exhibiting companies.

Themes presented at the fair ranged from classic outdoor activities like hiking, trail running, water sports and urban outdoor to the first-time integration of adventure travel and bikes. Also very well received was the new Cross-Industry segment, with presentations at the trade fairs automatica, electronica, EXPO REAL, IFAT, LOPEC, LASER World of PHOTONICS and transport logistic, as well as presentations by representatives of the respective industries, which demonstrated the potential for cooperation with other industries outside the outdoor sector.

By expanding the traditional concept of outdoor, OutDoor by ISPO was able to attract many new exhibitors. In one reflection of this, Gabor, a company with a long tradition, showcased its products for the very first time at an outdoor trade fair by being part of the Shoe & Trailrunning Village. Other new exhibitors included the bike softgoods brands ION and Endura as well as Billabong, Element and Griffin that had booths in the new urban outdoor area THE BORDERLANDSTM. The complete bicycle brands Husqvarna, Scott, Raymon, BH Bikes, Cake, Ttici, Geos, HNF Nicolai and TQ Systems showcased their products as part of the bike test track.

The trade fair also offered a broad range of talks, presentations, shows and discussion groups that addressed business-related issues in all segments, as well Press release | July 3, 2019 | 3/5 as tips and inspiration for the point of sale and customer assistance. Thematic round tables that included widely known companies focused on the direction and visions of the expanding climbing community and the outdoor shoe industry.

“With OutDoor by ISPO, Messe München is providing the exact modern platform that the industry needs to address the changes currently sweeping through the market,” said Arne Strate, the General Secretary of the European Outdoor Group. “We are looking forward to working with the ISPO team and offering a farreaching international forum in the future.”

Sustainability: the industry’s common goal

One theme shaped every segment of the fair: Sustainability has been an absolute must-have for the entire outdoor industry for years now. A large number of initiatives and projects designed to create a more sustainable industry was presented not just in the CSR Hub & Sustainability Kiosk. The theme was also highlighted throughout the remaining Focus Areas and exhibitors’ booths. Industry heavyweights like adidas and Vaude as well as smaller companies like Picture Organic Clothing, Pyua and the newcomer Palgero demonstrated that recycled polyester fibers and natural materials – like fibers from wood or brown algae – represent real alternatives to conventional synthetic fibers.

OutDoor by ISPO has expressed its clear commitment to sustainability by introducing a code of conduct that calls for environmentally conscious and socially responsible activities. The code provided organizers, exhibitors and visitors to the trade fair with specific ways they could act in a climate-neutral and sustainable manner. The ISPO team made resource conservation one of its top priorities while planning and conducting the event. The participants of the show set a good example: around 75 percent travelled by public transport.

OutDays – a festival of outdoor culture

However, it was not just trade visitors who were part of the new outdoor movement. The important target group of end consumers was able to get in on the act as well. Together with 43 partners who primarily came from industry and retailing, 33 events and activities were held in Munich and the Munich region, an area that extended all the way to the Alps: from open-air movie evenings and meet & greet opportunities with widely known outdoor personalities like Tim Leatherman to the “Icecold Midsummernight,” a bivouac camp on the Hintertux Glacier located at an elevation of 3,000 meters. The first OutDays offshoot was held simultaneously in Hamburg. The offerings are scheduled to be expanded next year.

Information available all year round

In addition to the annual trade fair, OutDoor by ISPO is offering a high-reach, year-round platform to the entire outdoor community. It will be based on the ISPO network ecosystem with numerous analog and digital services along the entire value chain. Manufacturers, retailers and end consumers will thus have access to relevant and up-to-date industry topics 365 days a year.


You will find more details and background information about the four days of the trade fair and industry news at ispo.com. The media database offers photo material. All TV podcasts are available in our media library. Official exhibitor statements about the premiere can also be found on the website.

The next Outdoor by ISPO trade fair will be held from June 28 to July 1, 2020, in Munich.

Other upcoming dates from the ISPO network are:
• ISPO Shanghai from July 5 – 7, 2019
• ISPO Munich from January 26 – 29, 2020
• ISPO Beijing from February 12 – 15, 2020

About OutDoor by ISPO

OutDoor by ISPO is the year-round platform for a new outdoor movement, combined with the largest annual international trade fair for the outdoor sector. This is carried out in close partnership with the European Outdoor Group (EOG). ISPO Business Solutions expand the portfolio year-round with both digital as well as cross-media services and create a far-reaching platform for the whole outdoor community. The trade fair OutDoor by ISPO is held for the first time at Messe München from June 30 to July 3, 2019. From 1993 to June 2018, Friedrichshafen hosted the trade fair.

About ISPO

ISPO is the world’s leading sports network for business professionals and consumer experts. The platform was launched in 1970 and brings together an integrated range of industry-related analog and digital services under the ISPO family brand name. This includes the world’s largest multisegment trade fairs ISPO Munich, ISPO Beijing and ISPO Shanghai, Europe’s biggest outdoor trade fair OutDoor by ISPO; the online news portal ISPO.com, and the business solutions ISPO Digitize, ISPO Brandnew, ISPO Open Innovation, ISPO Award, ISPO Academy, ISPO Textrends, ISPO Job Market and ISPO Shop. With its far-reaching mix of innovation promotion, industry networking, know-how and editorial insights, ISPO works 365 days a year to support companies and sports enthusiasts, and to foster passion for sport worldwide.

Messe München

Messe München is one of the leading exhibition organizers worldwide with more than 50 of its own trade shows for capital goods, consumer goods and new technologies. Every year, a total of over 50,000 exhibitors and around three million visitors take part in more than 200 events at the exhibition center in Munich, at the ICM – Internationales Congress Center München and the MOC Veranstaltungscenter München as well as abroad. Together with its subsidiary companies, Messe München organizes trade shows in China, India, Brazil, Russia, Turkey, South Africa, Nigeria, Vietnam and Iran. With a network of associated companies in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America as well as around 70 representations abroad for over 100 countries, Messe München has a global presence.

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