The Canadian Sports Market Hits it Out of the Park in 2017

Toronto, ON - September 28, 2017 - The $9.5 Billion Canadian Sports market is experiencing record growth in 2017 with sales up +17 per cent year over year. Key drivers include Apparel, which has grown by +21 per cent to $6.7 Billion and Footwear, which is up +9 per cent to $2.9 Billion.

The spring and early summer period (May-July) were largely to thank for this surge as sales increased by +35 per cent year over year during this time.

The millennial consumer continues to drive growth in the sports market as this key demographic contributed to over 50 per cent of the overall dollar gain in the market (equivalent to $700 Million in incremental sales this year). Interestingly, for the first time both male and female millennials contributed the same amount in revenue to the overall sports market ($1.7 Billion), suggesting that both segments of the population are engaging in the active/athleisure trend.

While the industry has seen strong growth overall, there have been some significant changes in terms of how the consumer is spending their money. Consumers have moved their spending away from the Sports Specialty Channel (which currently represents 32 per cent of the market) and gravitated more towards the Off-Price Channel and Pure Play, such as Amazon. This shift in spend is also being seen in the millennial cohort where sales at Sports Specialty declined by -6 per cent in the last quarter.

Overall the athleisure trend has continued to gain traction (especially with millennial consumers) while at the same time performance purchases have slowed. Furthermore, millennial consumers are increasingly identifying their purchases as being “on trend” (17 per cent of active apparel sales, up 1pt) rather than sporty (17 per cent of active apparel sales, down 4pts).


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Erick Bauer
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