Delving into the opportunities to be uncovered at Sportswear Pro 2024!
Michael Ryan, Head of Sportswear Pro at FESPA shares opportunities that will be revealed at FESPA's new upcoming Sportswear Pro 2024. Sportswear Pro will focus on sustainable sportswear, personalisation and near-shoring.
The much anticipated Sportswear Pro launch event is just around the corner and we’re looking forward to showing visitors the growth potential of this market.
Taking place in Hall 11 of the Amsterdam RAI from 19 – 22 March 2024, we’ll be showcasing the latest solutions for on-demand customised sportswear and garment production, and connecting visitors with a host of experts involved in every step of the manufacturing process.
That’s not all though. On 21st March, we’re hosting a comprehensive conference programme delving into trends, opportunities and innovations in the sportswear market. In anticipation of our line-up of knowledgeable speakers, in this blog I’ll touch on some of the most pressing industry topics and how we’re addressing them in the conference.
Sustainable sportswear gains traction
As with all sectors FESPA is active in, sustainability has gathered pace in the fashion industry. We’re at a critical turning point now, and it’s essential for brands, retailers and manufacturers to understand just how important the topic is to consumers – and how it can make or break sales.
We know that sportswear manufacturers are re-evaluating the materials and practices they employ, but one of the biggest challenges they face is where to start. That’s why the Sportswear Pro conference puts a strong focus on sustainability, and the steps visitors can take to be more environmentally responsible.
For example, Ana Kristiansson, Founder and Creative Director of Desinder will zone in on the circular economy. And, in a panel session titled ‘Designing for the Circular Economy’, we have four experts exploring circular design, improving sustainable collaboration between suppliers and partners, and product life extension.
Considering the extensive choice of textiles now open to brands, in his talk on ‘Innovations in Materials and Fabrics for Sportswear’, Paul Foulkes-Arellano, Founder of Circuthon, will explore the sustainable alternatives and the tools available for sportswear producers looking to make the switch.
Sportswear gets personal
Today’s customers also demand products that are tailored to their tastes and that feel unique, whether it’s a workout top or an exclusive sports kit.
I believe the commercial opportunities in on-demand customisation are too exciting for sportswear manufacturers to pass up. You can explore personalisation more fully in Amsterdam at Personalisation Experience, which is next to Sportswear Pro in Hall 11.
And for visitors specifically interested in understanding the potential of personalisation in sportswear, our FESPA Personalisation Ambassador, Richard Askam, will moderate a session about the transformative impact of tailored experiences in product design, marketing, and customer engagement.
Attendees can also visit the Personalise Make Wear feature in Hall 11, a smart factory showcasing the end-to-end production of customised sports garments and merchandise in conjunction with suppliers including Kornit, Dover Group, Caldera, Inkcups and Antigro.
Bringing production closer to home
Today, consumers can make impulse purchases and have an item in their hands within 24 hours.
Expectations of brands in terms of delivery timelines are high, which presents a logistical challenge for businesses that have moved manufacturing off-shore.
To respond to consumer demand promptly and turn orders around within that coveted 24-hour timeframe, stock needs to be physically closer to customers.
Add in strong demand for customised items and the challenge becomes even trickier.
So, the pressure is on for sportswear brands to integrate on-demand, just-in-time production and mass customisation into their business models, and those that can’t meet these demands risk losing their competitive edge.
To address this topic, Samantha Taylor from The Good Factory and Krisjanis Ozols, Head of Operations Strategic Partnerships & R&D at Printful, will debate near shoring, supply chain resilience and improving agility in manufacturing, giving visitors insight into the steps they can take to be more responsive to customer demand.
Taking these three opportunities – sustainability, personalisation, and near-shoring – combined with the technological advances that will be shared at Sportswear Pro, it’s clear that sportswear businesses can be optimistic about the multiple avenues for positive change and growth. We look forward to seeing these trends come to life!
To find out more and to register your attendance, visit: www.sportswearpro.com. To see the complete conference programme, visit: https://www.sportswearpro.com/sportswear-pro-forum.
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