Mistral SUP 2024 Preview

Retail Buyers Guide:  2024 SUP Retail Buyer’s Guide
Brand:  Mistral
Interviewee: Steve West, Communications and Content Manager

Carry overs were the go-to choice in 2023 to help clear the retailers & distributors existing inventories. Did the strategy pay out?
During the winter of 2023 and leading up to the spring, we invested heavily in preparing our online sales strategy, warehousing, and distribution to be prepared for our optimism regarding online sales in particular. Fortunately, this paid off, and we met our target and cleared a backlog of older stock items from 2022. While we were left with some 2023 products, that’s actually a good thing as it fills out our inventory as we restock with 2024 items.

When do you think supply and demand will balance out and why?
We believe during the 2024 season, we will find a balance between supply and demand, given that we’ve depleted our previous stock levels and taken a conservative view of the year ahead, in addition to ever-improving levels of online strategies at both B2C and B2B levels.

What is your product strategy for next season? Bold and fresh or a more cautious approach?
The market remains highly competitive and diversified, and therefore, a cautious approach to future projections is required when you see SUP in decline, foiling on the rise but with the caveat that it’s yet to be seen if the sport will be nurtured correctly in respect of entry-level riders or whether it will simply go full bore and dilute itself into an extreme niche hole. Strategically, we’re covering our bases with our online strategy,  having designed inflatable family-focused SUP boards resulting from in-depth market research on what designs and USPs are popular and at what price point. We’ve also turned our attention to the commercial market regarding water sports facilitators. We’ve some bold, fresh designs for the family end of the market and more conservative, graphically designed boards for niche interests. We’ve added some double chamber boards to keep the mix varied, encouraging commercial operations to embrace this particular construction approach in particular.

Which inflatable models are you pushing in 2024? Anything new in the technology/material front to report?
So far as drop stitch materials are concerned, we’ve taken the view not to overshoot the market regarding pushing for the next best thing; indeed, the development of DS material per se has eased given the market situation; there’s only so much you can value an inflatable at and praise its merits before it becomes clear, advancement of the technology exceeds the needs, wants and budget of your target audience. We’ve elected to remain with DS material that ticks all the boxes within a price point which is, above all, affordable and well within the expectations of the user’s needs. We’re particularly focused on family and touring boards; touring-styled boards have become the ‘Freeride’ boards of the SUP recreational market once past the entry phase.

(hardboard brands only) How important is the hardboard category for your business? Which boards are still relevant in 2024?
Internally, we’ve had many discussions about this topic. Commercially speaking, inflatable SUPs still pay the bills and represent the greater part of turnover. Hardboards are harder to crack, as they are distinctly more niche and performance-orientated when you consider surf and racing disciplines requiring team riders to push their performance merits. To some extent, the construction of these boards brings with it added marketing efforts beyond simple Instagram moments of folks messing about on inflatables. It’s food for thought that the industry has invested so much on the merits of the inflatable that the merits of the hardboard have been all but ignored, especially when brands argue their inflatables are as near high performing as their inflatables, which is nonsense and shows bias without thought. We’re pro hardboards, and we will be tweaking our race boards and sticking with our surf and touring offerings in the belief there’s a need to keep these in our lineup for the sake of the riders and, indeed, the prestige of our brand.

Key Products:

Cozumel 11’6:
Our Mistral Cozumel paddleboard is an all-in-one, ready-to-ride, premium quality, visually colourful, recreational inflatable paddleboard. Enjoy stand-up paddling or kayaking using the deck D-rings to secure a kayak seat. An ideal first-time recreational SUP cruising paddleboard. Multiple grab handles and cargo net – all in one package with a paddle.



Aruba SUP:
The Mistral Aruba 10’6 x 33” ready-to-ride inflatable paddleboard is ideal for family life. Enjoy stand-up paddling or kayaking using the deck D-rings to secure a kayak seat. Moor up or hitch a tow using the bow-mounted towing ring and use the elasticated cargo lines to secure provisions.



Designed to offer optimal balance, comfort and performance for riders of all levels. Whether riding a small wave or cruising the shoreline, the super comfortable soft deck, tri-fin setup, and cargo net allow for optimum rider usability, available in 11’6 x 32.5 and 10’6 x 32



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120 Mistral SUP

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