So one year ago at ISPO 2015 I met the Brandwave team for the first time, not knowing that just one year later I would return to the show as one of their team members. Surely a reason to celebrate in Munich, but by far not the only one.

A lot has happened in the Brandwave world since last year’s show as we had two babies! One of them being Dan’s daughter Roxie, the other being our brand new office in Munich, headed up by our Head of International Vicky Stickland. ISPO was the perfect time to say “Prost” and celebrate the German office launch – not without the rest of the team though. So in Dan’s 14th consecutive year at ISPO, he decided to fly the 14-man strong Brandwave team in for ISPO and our Brandwave Beerfest. Well those of you who joined us will know by now that the Brandwave team knows how to party…

Having the unique opportunity of having the entire creative team with us at the show was actually fantastic for many reasons. Besides having the chance of exploring latest design trends, it also enabled our designers to see a lot of their creative they have been working on during the last couple of months – always a great reward for every designer to see their work in “real life”. It also enabled us as the Account Management team to take them with us to numerous client meetings, a great and valuable starting point to already play around with some ideas when discussing upcoming projects as well seeing & feeling the actual products.

What else made ISPO 2016 special? Of course I have to mention the new layout of the halls with the Action Sports halls moving to B5/B6 & A6. To be honest, it took me (or most of us?) 1-2 days to switch my mind around and get used to it, but besides this initial confusion the hall layout mostly worked well for me, with some of the halls having a clearer theme though than others. Great to see the new water tank in A6 which surely gives credit to the SUP market, one of the few industries within the sports sector which has shown significant increase throughout the last years. Some room for improvement though in terms of trade show stands as these tend to look slightly messy with the big boards.

Another highlight was surely the Health & Fitness hall with its latest innovations, especially in the wearables sector. I also spotted some interesting new wearables & apps and it’s exciting to feel the innovative buzz, in particular within the ISPO Brandnew section. As the market becomes more crowded, it will be key for these brands to communicate their functionality more clearly and their benefits over other products – this is something that from my perception still lacks attention. This actually also applies to the big brands that presented avalanche backpacks at the show, which we felt need to articulate their USPs over competitors more explicitly.

Quick review of textile design trends: the key obvious trends for us were the minimal designs and lack of patterns, instead going for clean block designs. There are still lots of bright and contrasting colours & zippers at the stands, but we also see a tendency of going back to duller colour choices, in particular for premium products. And my personal discovery: less beards & beanies this year! Very relieving after last year’s hairy invasion if I may say so…

Some stats to conclude: following this year’s wearables trend, Anna decided to track her ISPO distance. Let us know your guess!

a) 30,609 steps = 19.68 km

b) 43,723 steps = 28.12 km

c) 59,832 steps = 38.46 km

ISPO 2017 – We’ll be there!

Anna Buechel

Author Anna Buechel

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