Industry News 4/3/2006

Junior Product Sales Strong for Winter 05-06

SIA Reports Junior Product Sales Strong for Winter 05-06


McLean, VA (March 30, 2006)…  As with all sports, the future of the snowsports industry lies in today’s youth embracing skiing and snowboarding.  And, if this past season is any indicator, juniors are not only embracing snowsports, they are also accounting for a hefty chunk of purchases at the cash register.

According to SnowSports Industries America’s (SIA) most recent Retail Audit (which tracked snowsports sales from August 2005 through January 2006) $128 million in junior equipment, apparel and accessories has sold-through at snowsport specialty retail stores -- a 14% increase over the same period last season.  In fact, junior products accounted for 10% of all snowsports dollars sold this season.

These retail sales trends dovetail nicely with current consumer trends.  According to the national 2005 Skier/Boarder Opinion Survey, more parents who have children under the age of 16 are bringing them to the slopes; from 57% in 1993/94 compared to 82% in 2004/2005. 

Less concerned with highly technical fabrics, taped seams and waterproofing – juniors are very image-conscience and demand fashion-forward elements in their snowsports equipment and outerwear.

“They know what’s in and what’s not and they want to stand out. Kids don’t want to wear baby clothes; they want to look good and fashionable like teens and young adults,” says Coalision International Talent designer Isabel Lafortune.

“Some kids buy based on brand, but aesthetics matter a ton.  Riders are taking more risks with looks.  More daring styles are selling because kids are stoked on the looks, like Nitro’s team boot that’s bright green with a gum sole,” said Ryan Terwilliger, manager of MiloSport in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Some examples of next season’s hottest junior products that were launched at SIA.06:

Roxy has a huge hit with their polka-dot Palm Beach Dynastar ski and matching Rossi née Roxy soft boot of the same name, also sporting dots on black liners. 

Expanding its freestyle line to include younger girls, K2 adds its new Missy ski.  The new girls’ twintip and its male counterpart, the Juvy, sport dimensions of 95/70/91 and lengths all the way down to 119cm. 

When kids outgrow or outride soft kids’ boards, Nidecker offers a stiffer, small-sized sandwich construction board, the Mini Diablo, for competing on jumps and rails.

Orage’s Talent junior collection explores new textures and mixes up embosses, prints, nylon twill, canvas, creative stitching and embroidery in girlie greens, blues, pinks and soft purples for girls and toned-down earth tones for boys.

Ride introduces Ride Junior snowboard outerwear for 9 to 14-year-old kids.  Using two-layer coated twill designers sculpted two jackets and a pant for boys, and two jackets and a pant for girls.  The boys’ line boasts a 3-D print lining and comes with 3-D glasses.  Girls get a chic cherry-print lining.

Bonfire carries adult features into youth styles and adds full insulation, a lift-ticket ring, cargo pockets, adjustable waistband, reinforced belt loops and Tricot-lined hand pockets so juniors have no excuse not to ride all day.

Obermeyer emphasizes just-for-kids’ designs such as candy-shop confection colors, sparkly trims, satiny fabrics and an Asian-inspired girlie print.  Grown-up features include cellphone/iPod pockets, underarm ventilation, powder skirts, race cuffs and the same performance fabrics sued in the adult line. 

Base Layers
Hot Chillys’ new Salsa Girls line scales down mom’s winter base layers to fit daughters.

– SIA –

SnowSports Industries America (SIA) is the intelligent partner of the snow sports industry. SIA annually produces the SIA SnowSports Show, the largest industry trade show and networking environment, and delivers invaluable data, support and marketing products. SIA.07 is scheduled for January 22-25 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV. SIA serves as the national, not-for-profit, member-owned trade association representing snow and winter sports companies. For more information, check out SnowSports Industries America, 8377-B Greensboro Drive, McLean, VA 22102-3587. Phone: (703) 556-9020, Fax: (703) 821-8276, E-mail: