The first draft of this editorial had to be discarded after a late-March trip to Tignes, where a solid 70cms of snow in as many hours made for some knee-deep tree powder shred. My original draft spoke of a winter we’d happily put behind us (unless of course you were lucky enough to spend some time in the Pyrenees, which somehow saw the fifth highest snowfall in the world – see French Market Intel), but with this substantial snowfall arriving just in time for Easter, it brought with it some holiday cheer for all. However, this late snow isn’t exclusive to this winter, with late snowfalls becoming the norm in recent seasons; offering retailers the perfect opportunity to shift product over the busy Easter period. At Source we often hear the same issues; retailers want better margins and exclusivity and brands want retailers to keep their head and hold off from sales. Maybe this year’s late snow can give both parties some well-deserved breathing room and confidence for next year.
This past season’s tradeshow season provided cause for optimism with the emergence of new legitimate snowboard brands, as the article New Kids On The Block (p.48), explains ‘disposable society craves authenticity’. And it’s with this buoyancy we stride forward into our April/May issue, and turn our attention to Spring with our 2015 Surfboard Trend Report; which looks at the advent of performance hybrids and how the distribution model is changing. Our SUP Trend Report (p.43) offers a comprehensive overview of this growing market as it enters its strongest selling period of the year. The Big Wig Interview speaks with GoPro’s EMEA Marketing Director, Filip Good to find out more about how the brand ticks in Europe. In brand profiles we look at newbies Templeton, SUPERbrand and REKD. Source’s Sunglasses Trend Report (p.29) sees a big step forward in performance technology, while our Longboard Trend Report (p.55) highlights a sector that with well educated sales staff, can produce decent extra revenue, and done incorrectly can leave your store with excess product and a bad rep.
Finally, back due to popular demand, we have returned the hard working boardsports industry personnel to our front cover. Props to Rip Curl Marketing Manager Jean-Seb Estienne for this issue’s banger. Keep an eye out for our online gallery of all this issue’s entries.
Harry Mitchell Thompson