Outdoor Industry Association Rolls Out Plan to Strengthen Retail

Outdoor Industry Association today unveiled its strategy to assist specialty retailers in strengthening their businesses in 2009 as businesses continue to grapple with unpredictable market shifts.

Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) today unveiled its strategy to assist specialty retailers in strengthening their businesses in 2009 as businesses continue to grapple with unpredictable market shifts. As part of its refined strategic direction, the OIA Retail Program will focus on training, education and timely research and business intelligence.

"It is time for the outdoor industry to ensure that specialty outdoor retailers have a real competitive advantage in the new world order," commented Frank Hugelmeyer, president of Outdoor Industry Association. "OIA is dedicated to the longterm success of specialty retail and is pleased to provide education and tools focusing on immediate and tangible ways specialty retailers can improve their operational performance and profitability."

First out of the gate will be the Outdoor Specialty Retail Survive and Thrive Assessment Tool, designed in conjunction with Gluskin Townley Group, LLC. The free tool will be introduced next week and is designed to help Specialty retailers determine the health of their store operations and the effectiveness of their sales process.

During the 2009 Outdoor Retailer Winter Market (ORWM) in Salt Lake City, Utah, OIA will present two seminars to provide retailers with insight on how smart business decisions during turbulent times can produce positive results.

On Thursday, January 22, from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m., seminar attendees of Growing the Size of Your Business No Matter What the Economic Conditions will discover five ways to grow their business and three over-arching changes that owners and managers need to commit to.

During Inventory Management: The Process Is More Important Than the Technology, on Friday, January 23, from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m., attendees will learn that, at the end of the day, it’s not the computers or software, but store process, policies, procedures and management that make for great, more profitable inventory management and will explore the 11 retail store functions that are tied into a bigger and more complete store process.

Beginning in February, The Mann Group (TMG), a retail consulting firm specializing in retail management, training and strategic planning, and OIA will deliver webinar and live training workshops designed specifically for independent specialty retailers. The training will be delivered through two, six part, live webinar series and on-going, in-store sales management training workshops.

The Outdoor Specialty Retail Financial Performance Report, the second OIA benchmarking report designed specifically for retailers, will be fielded in March and delivered in July to provide retailers with the benchmarks to examine and plan their success in a changing retail landscape.

Designed to give specialty retail store owners, managers, and staff tools to improve their business operations and market competitiveness, Outdoor University will conduct its third national tour in 2009 at four locations across the country preceding regional and national tradeshows. Each program will feature four, one hour seminars covering the topics of Sales Analysis, Leadership Training, Employee Recruitment and Retention and Communications Tips.

"It's no secret the current economic climate is of great concern for many retailers," said Hugelmeyer. “By delivering these valuable tools and information directly to the retailers in their markets, OIA is providing a convenient and affordable resource for independent specialty businesses and we look forward to expanding this offering with continued retailer feedback.”


About Outdoor Industry Association

Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) is a national trade association whose mission is to ensure the growth and success of the outdoor industry. OIA provides trade services for over 4000 manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, sales representatives and retailers in the outdoor industry. OIA programs include representation in government/legislative affairs, market and social research, business-to-business services and youth outreach initiatives. Educational events include the annual Rendezvous, Outdoor University, and the Capitol Summit. Outdoor Industry Association is based in Boulder, Colorado, and is the title sponsor of the Outdoor Retailer tradeshows. For more information go to http://www.outdoorindustry.org or call 303.444.3353.