By Dylan Beach
Last Tuesday saw the 70 of Australia’s surf and snow brand managers and retailers join together at the Coogee Crowne Plaza to attend the October SBIA Industry Roundtable.
The afternoon session agenda was stacked to the brim. We welcomed guest speakers including renowned retail consultant Peter James Ryan from Red Communication, Andrew Ross from Urban Surf Wave Parks and Clint Fraser from Davidsons Accounting to present and answer questions on a range of topics.
With a captive audience Peter Ryan’s presented ‘The next wave in retail’ kicking off the session. Touching on the current state of retail Peter Ryan took the group through how the Australian market is placed, and how the surf and boardsports industry can capture future opportunities. His ideas on executing on the opportunity especially through multi sensory stimulus consumer habits left both retailers and brand managers with a pad full of notes and ideas to act upon.
Following on the hype of wave parks, we were lucky to have Andrew Ross, CEO and Founder of URBN Surf Wave Parks share advancements in the space. With the technology only going forward, Andrew was excited to share the planned wave parks in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. The first facilities are looking to open late 2018, and is expected to deliver high frequency of quality waves, with high guest capacity, producing 250,000 hours of surfing sessions and lessons per year.
Discussing the opportunities, the parks will bring mass participation to easily accessible urban areas around Australia. The new wave park technology offers an extended list of potential for the Australian surf industry kept the room buzzing with the hope of an future roundtable on location in the near future.
Opening back up after a quick break Jack Welch’s quote “If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, then the end is near” set the bar for a presentation on the Changing Consumer. SBIA’s Anthony Wilson and Paul Burdekin went through the next phase of consumerism, their drivers and as an industry how we respond. This was followed by Clint Fraser, who then jumped straight into breaking up the room into groups to delve further into discussions and questions on how the industry can respond.
Clint’s wrap up of the day bought up engaging conversation that left the entire room with ideas. Much of which revolved around brining the industry’s unique authentic experiences in product and retail, focusing on sustainable and responsible practices, embracing technology and building on multi sensory stimulation experiences to engage with the customers. All promoting plenty of food for thought leading into summer trade period.
The SBIA’s eyes are now fixed on the 2018 event schedule. Coinciding with the Quiksilver and Roxy Pro, our next event in March will see a massive program for the SBIA on the Gold Coast including:
-A new format full day agenda on retail up skilling featuring recognized industry specific experts.
-The “SBIA Industry Surf Stomp” dedicated to raising awareness and funds for the Surfrider Foundation.
Stay tuned for event details.