The 12th Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) Rendezvous, an annual leadership and learning conference reported record attendance, exceeding last year's attendance numbers by 28%.
year, Rendezvous attracts hundreds of high level outdoor industry
professionals to one location for seminars, speakers, and active
outdoor recreation excursions. The event is a forum for industry
leaders to learn about emerging economic and market trends, discover
new business tools and discuss ideas to advance the industry as a
whole. Rendezvous also showcases the outdoor industry connectedness and
commitment to outdoor recreation, as well as focuses on environmental
and sustainability ethics.
"At every Rendezvous, my staff has
a big idea meeting, so we can think and dream the next great
innovations in the store," explains Joe Hyer, supreme commander for
Alpine Experience. "It's worthwhile, and I haven't even mentioned all
the great training."
This year, OIA selected the
Vancouver-Hilton, in Vancouver, Washington, from October 3 to 5, 2007,
because of the community's commitment to outdoor recreation, and the
hotel's sustainable business practices.
KEY NOTE HIGHLIGHTS:
Rendezvous sessions provided practical, easy to implement ideas that inspired companies to work differently.
speakers were high caliber," said Kristine Carey, brand manager for
Sierra Designs and Ultimate Direction. "Rendezvous gave me an
opportunity to learn from different speakers that addressed the market
in different areas. It gave me bits and pieces and nuggets of
information to take back to the office."
Future Trends of the 21st Century
Speaker: Jeremy Rifkin, Founder and President, The Foundation on Economic Trends
Rifkin discussed his vision of the new economy and explained what the
future will look like, given the environmental, social and geopolitical
forces at work today. He also reviewed the trends and impacts of the
outdoor recreation industry as well as how the industry can shape
Today's Consumer is a Moving Target
Speaker: Marshal Cohen, Senior Industry Analyst, The NPD Group
explained how companies such as Apple, Estee Lauder and Merrell use the
5 E's (Educate, Explore, Elevate, Entertain, and Evaluate) to sustain
their consumer base. In today's rapidly shifting marketplace, brand
loyalty has subsided and the consumer-of-the-moment-rules. Many
companies are moving to a seasonal calendar, grabbing the attention of
audiences based on the holiday. The seasonal calendar approach to
product introductions is one example that shows retailers are out of
sync with consumer needs. To successfully compete for customer's wallet
share, the industry must connect with them, understand their buying
habits, and anticipate their every move.
Authenticitude Is the New Real and Other Keen Teen Insights
Speaker: Michael Wood, Vice President, TRU
Wood discussed groundbreaking research tracking teen trends,
lifestyles, media, brands and attitudes. In his presentation, Michael
unveiled several key themes to help attendees better understand young
people today, where they're headed and how to make a connection,
including: "Obsolessence", "VIPremium" and "Autono-ME".
Beyond the Horizon - A Human Powered Circumnavigation of the Globe
Speakers: Colin and Julie Angus, Angus Adventures
and Julie Angus recently accomplished the first ever human-powered
circumnavigation of the globe, detailed in their new book Beyond the
Horizon. This colossal adventure provided a truly unique view of our
world, of Mother Nature and of what we as humans stand to lose if we
don't act now to reduce our footprint.
"My expectations were
fully met. The speakers were dynamic and we all found many things we
could incorporate into our business," said John Hutchinson, president
of Fontana Sport Specialties.
Topic Snap Shots
included Reaching Millennials: Hijacking the Unpurchaseable Media with
Cal McAlister and Brian Mahr. The duo offered insights to communicate
with the millennial generation (born between 1979 and 1994) and shared
personal experiences and processes to help make marketing investments.
Speakers also addressed other tough business issues that are critical to the growth and success of the outdoor industry:
Economies: An in-depth look into India. India is one the
fastest-growing emerging markets and understanding all contexts will
help build a framework for a company's globalization strategies.
Trade: Outdoor retailers and manufacturers need to be aware that
decisions in Washington, D.C. regarding trade issues, can impact bottom
lines, and affect business' competitive edge and the future growth of
the industry as a whole.
•Market Opportunities in the US: The
Hispanic market is the largest consumer market in the U.S. The Latino
market is large, lucrative, and loyal. It's a marketer's dream and
major companies are changing their business to capture this new
audience as the "Latinization of America" changes the consumer
From the inspirational speech by Colin and Julie
Angus challenging attendees to stretch their definition of adventure to
networking with colleagues along the Willamette and Columbia Rivers on
the Portland Spirit, every occasion truly made Rendezvous a memorable
"Rendezvous allows many networking opportunities and in
this ever-changing industry, it's great to put a face to a name," said
Debbie Motz, executive director for Eastern Outdoor Reps Association.
VOLUNTEER PROJECT UPDATE:
Dubois Park and the Blandford Canyon Trail, in Vancouver, Washington
2007 OIA Rendezvous Volunteer Service Project was the largest
single-day service assignment in the history of Vancouver-Clark County
Park and Recreation Department.
Approximately 150 Rendezvous
attendees spent over five hours on Friday, October 5, 2007 improving
Dubois Park and the Blandford Canyon Trail, in Vancouver, Washington.
Volunteers consisted of CEOs, presidents and industry leaders from
companies such as Timberland, Jansport, and Thule.
volunteers cleared brush along the Blandford Canyon Trail as well as
leveled and edged surfaces to rehabilitate and maintain the path.
Dubois Park received a mulch makeover and touch ups around the area.
Dubois Park is approximately 3.5 acres and Blandford Canyon trail is
about .5 miles long.
Sponsorship supported 50% of the overall costs for the event. Below are the supporters of this year - 2007 Rendezvous.
sponsors for the OIA Rendezvous are Timberland, Brand Oregon, Oregon
Economic, Development Department, Portland Development Commission and
The State of Washington.
Supporting sponsors include Generator Group, Holland & Hart, Keen, Merrell, Nalgene, Outdoor Retailer, and REI.
Gold sponsors are Centerstone, Clark County, Jansport, and Redwood Creek.
sponsors include All Terrain, Camelbak, CGPR, Eastern Mountain Sports,
FedEx, Hood River County, KINesSYS, Larabar, prAna, Sierra, SNEWs,
Sperry Top-Sider, Superfeet, The Whiting Group, TRU, Southwest
Washington Electrician's Union, Woolrich, Yakima, Yellow, and Vancouver
ABOUT OUTDOOR INDUSTRY ASSOCATION:
Industry Association® (OIA) is a national trade association whose
mission is to ensure the growth and success of the outdoor industry.
The outdoor recreation economy contributes to approximately $750
billion annually to the U.S. economy. A wide spectrum of leading
manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and retailers of outdoor
recreation equipment and services, as well as other related business
entities make up OIA member base. OIA programs include representation
in government/legislative affairs, cutting edge market research, member
cost saving benefits and outreach initiatives to grow participation in
outdoor activities and promote healthier lifestyles. Outdoor Industry
Association is the exclusive endorser of the Outdoor Retailer
tradeshow. For more information go to http://www.outdoorindustry.org or
Rendezvous Addresses Industry ImportanceFriday, 12 October 2007
David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 15 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada and teaches for several paddling schools in Ontario, Canada. Full Bio.