SFIA Attends the 2018 Athletic Business Show
SFIA rep, Alex Kerman, took on the exhibition floor at the 2018 Athletic Business Show in New Orleans last Thursday and Friday. With over 250 exhibitors showcasing thousands of fitness products, it was quite a whirlwind. According to Athletic Business, there was a record number of pre-registrants for the show, and it was very clear after seeing the heavy amount of foot traffic throughout the entire event.
Exhibitors mainly consisted of fitness equipment manufacturers and companies manufacturing floors (i.e. turf areas, sport surfaces, etc.), as well as companies who make uniforms, non-profit organizations and various registration platforms. The variety and innovation provided by these booths surely captured the attention of attendees, who are generally individuals running facilities, such as recreational gyms, parks and community centers.
After meeting with many SFIA members who were exhibiting products at the show, and talking with many other exhibitors, SFIA noted that the subject of China tariffs was of utmost concern among manufacturers in the fitness industry. While most manufacturers had been affected by the tariffs in some way, there are still a few that have come out unscathed. However, there is grave concern shared among everyone in the industry regarding the impact of future tariffs, causing a great amount of uneasiness.
On a brighter note, even with the unstable environment caused by tariffs, the overall consensus from exhibition participants was that sales for this year were strong. This coincides with SFIA data reporting that participation in most fitness activities are up, which is great news for the industry.
Overall, the show presented many new products and great networking opportunities.
Next stop for SFIA: John Peters, VP of Business Development, will be at The Running Event in Austin, Texas on Nov. 27–30. Let us know if you will be in attendance, and if you would like to meet up! (Please direct all meeting requests to Alli Schulman at email@example.com.)