The launch of the Paddle Sports Show in Lyon two years ago provided the European paddle industry with a new industry get together following the closure of Paddleexpo. The Paddle Sports Show has cemented itself as the trade show for paddle sports in Europe. To make this year’s edition of the show even more attractive it has moved to Strasbourg, which is easily accessible from all the major northern European markets and on the French /German border. The show is taking place at Le Parc des Expositions de Strasbourg, located along Avenue Herrenschmidt, down by the banks of the river only 2km from downtown Strasbourg.
For this year’s event 4500 sq metres of stand space will fill the hall, and brands’ booking numbers are 20% up on last year’s 140+. Visitors from 30+ countries are expected. Similar to last year, there is a a complete line-up of special events, including talks & summits, the Paddle Sports Product of the Year Awards, film festivals and on water-demos.
Expect the whole industry to be gathered under one roof for three days to share in the shaping of our future and to demonstrate the collective strength of the Paddle industry.
On the first day, the show is open from 9:00-19:00PM and stand parties will be welcoming you between 19:00 – 22:00. Day two the hours are the same followed by the industry party and awards ceremony from 7-10PM. The last day is shorter from 9:00 – 15:00PM.
The Industry Party and Awards Ceremony on the 28th is not to be missed with the Products of the Year Awards and the annual Hall of Fame ceremony. The 13 categories in the Paddlesport Product of the Year Awards, presented by Kayak Session Publishing, are chosen by a panel of independent judges, whilst the new Dealer Buzz award is voted for online by the industry. The awards highlight products that are making a difference through innovation, performance, design, and utility and the lucky winners are announced during the industry party. As an additional service to exhibitors, the show will have a video studio and photo booth available where exhibitors or visitors can professionally shoot products, with a green wall, spotlights, professional photographers, and video operators.
Once again this year, the Paddle Sports Show is organising a series of conferences and debates on themes relating to the paddle sports industry. Hosted by Joel Doux (Outdoor Editions & Canoe Kayak magazine) and Jean-Yves Lapeyrère (President EC-OE, European Confederation of Outdoor Employers). These conferences will be multilingual and based on exchange and discussion.
First up, on the first day of the show, at 2PM is a debate on “Kids and the future market for Paddle Sports”. This is the number one problem facing our sports today, how to become and remain attractive to children, who are the customers of tomorrow. Media coverage and marketing play a key role here. But we also often forget the basics: the equipment, which also has to be attractive and suitable for children. Based on a few examples, we will try to understand the driving forces and actions that will drive youngsters to Paddle Sports.
Next up at 4.30PM is a debate on “What is the future for the Stand Up Paddle market?”. Against the backdrop of the current sluggish market, what are the driving forces behind SUP, which seems to be marking a pause after a period of very rapid growth in recent years? We’ll hear from brands and debate the latest trends in paddling: foils, e-foils and surf skiing.
On Thursday, the program starts at 11AM with a look at “Surf-ski, Pirogue and Sea Kayaking for fitness paddling”. Surf-skis and pirogues are new ways of approaching paddling spots from a new angle, that of fitness for the general public. More fun, sexier and more reassuring, they make you want to get on board and practice in a different way.
At 2PM, NGOs from the Free Rivers Fund and Save the Austari Jökulsá will look at how we can protect rivers together! Everyone is invited to take part and (re)discover the positive actions that have been taken within communities to defend our rivers.
The last Thursday topic will be “How do you sell a kayak?”. Selling a kayak is never easy, whether you’re a specialist or not, but it’s even more difficult when you’re not a specialist, because there are so many different types of product for different environments, levels and practices. Using specific examples and feedback, they will look at the specific characteristics of the products and how to approach them during a sale. With testimonials from various players in the retail world, distribution network and even brands.
Finally on Friday at 10.30AM, “The Virtuous Paddle Sports Recycling Chain” will be examined. How can the paddle sports industry and distribution channel get involved and play a key role in the product cycle? What for example if shops became collection points for recycling paddle sports products and the essential link in the recycling process? Bob Tims will lead a discussion presenting a product collection and recycling programme, in which shops are at the centre of an ambitious scheme, between the paddler and the manufacturer.
Strasbourg is an easy location to access with its airport, connections to the motorway network and the TGV train system. The airport is less than 15-minute drive from the show, the train station is only three tram stops away. This is a “green” show. Once you reach Strasbourg, there is no need for a car
Acton sports retailers and distributors should take the time to visit the show and look at this market whether it be for hardboards or inflatables. The Paddle Sports Show is a one-stop-shop window for all there is to buy in the paddle business and it’s all under one roof in a single hall, simplifying the selection and buying process for retailers and this is a significant advantage for all visiting shops. See you in Strasbourg.
For more info go to www.thepaddlesportshow.com