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SPORTING GOODS MANUFACTURERS, STORES CHANGING WITH TIMES
Published October 25, 1995
The sporting goods industry is adapting to customers, as sports such as snowboarding, windsurfing, roller hockey and camping are among the leaders in sales increases, John Simons reports in U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT. Simons notes that the $32B sporting goods industry "has shown little growth" in the '90s, and experts say "interest in the old traditional sports is waning." That's why in-line skating, along with extreme sports such as rock climbing "have all registered triple-digit growth" in the '90s. Manufacturers are using unfamiliar tactics to expand the market, too. Ride, a Seattle snowboard manufacturer, has signed a deal with Marvel Comics to design a line of superhero snowboards for children. Activities such as camping have also seen a jump in sales. The $1.5B outdoor equipment market has seen sales jump 70% since '89. As for the outlets where consumers are buying items in the changing market, they've had to "race to keep up." Simons: "The key to rejuvenation for the mature sporting goods industry clearly lies with the sprightly, young companies that are developing hip new products" (U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT, 10/30 issue).