Participation in sports and activities can directly affect the sportswear market, as increased participation leads to a greater demand for functional sportswear, and increased popularity of performance-enhancing goods.
Despite government efforts to raise the fitness of the nation through national governing body initiatives and interest generated off the back of the London 2012 Olympic Games, the latest figures from Sport England actually show a decrease in sports participation for the beginning of 2013.
Furthermore, changes in fashion are generating growing consumer interest in sportswear purchased for aesthetic purposes, especially among the fashion-conscious youth market. The impacts of these issues and other factors such as economic considerations, the effect of the Olympics, the structure of the industry and the introduction of innovative technology are all discussed in detail in this report.
In terms of the global market, Nike and adidas are maintaining their presence as market leaders both globally and within the UK market. With increased consolidation and closures of sportswear companies in recent years, there are fewer competitors in the UK market in terms of both brands and retailers.
Retail giants Pentland Group and Sports Direct International PLC have acquired a majority of the market share, with JJB Sports entering administration in 2012. This trend is attributable to the difficulties faced by the UK economy in recent years in the wake of the recession; however, the sportswear market is recording growth overall.
It is expected that the sports clothing and footwear industry will continue to grow over the next 5 years. The trend for sportswear as fashion wear, as well as continued public interest in maintaining a sporting lifestyle for the future, are likely to facilitate an increase in sales for the industry.
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