European Outdoor Group statement on OutDoor and the Vision 2020 process

In response to material that has appeared in the public domain following yesterday’s announcement about the long-term future of the OutDoor trade fair, the European Outdoor Group (EOG) is issuing this statement to clarify some key facts.

The EOG began the Vision 2020 project over two and half years ago and as part of the process, commissioned the biggest piece of research on the subject ever done in the European outdoor sector.  Through that, the association compiled information from hundreds of retailers, brands and suppliers, and from every country in Europe and many others around the world.  In total, the Vision 2020 team completed over 90 hours of face to face interviews with stakeholders.  Through this work, economically speaking, the EOG surveyed around 90% of the market and simply put, that stands for something.

The EOG membership itself is fully representative of the whole sector and includes brands, retailers and ingredient brands.  The association’s own well established and highly respected State of Trade market research programme puts the economic size of the wide EOG membership at around 70% of the total European outdoor market.  These two points together show that the decision that was taken about the future of OutDoor was not made by the minority, but is representative of the interests of the whole sector.

The EOG’s key aims have been to keep the sector united, and to ensure that it has the right trade fair platform for the 21st century digital outdoor industry.  All three shortlisted venues had an equal opportunity to propose solutions for the ambitious challenges that were set, and the result was that Messe München polled more than three times the vote of its nearest rival.

This was a fully democratic process, as the EOG believes that it is the members of the community who should decide on their own future.  They have done that with an overwhelming majority and the EOG is certainly not trying to divide the sector on this matter.  The intention has always been the opposite and that has been reflected in the actions that have been taken at every stage of the process.  Ultimately, the result of the vote was definitive and clearly represents the will of the industry.  We look forward to the entire outdoor sector uniting behind this decision, and to building an exciting and dynamic OutDoor together with Messe München.