The global athletic footwear market was valued at USD 99.61 billion in 2020, and it is projected to register a CAGR of 4.56% during the period, 2021-2026.
The COVID-19 pandemic has adversely affected several industries, including the athletic footwear market, across the globe. Business priorities have switched to liquidation strategies and inventory management while assessing post-pandemic consumer habit alterations, with consumption at a standstill and inventories piling up in warehouses.
Given the combined effect of outlet closures, and frugality resulting from the rapidly deteriorating economic situation, the discretionary character of footwear made it one of the most seriously hit businesses by the pandemic. Moreover, a decline in consumer demand for athletic footwear was noted by brands like Adidas, Nike, and Puma, among others, as consumers reduced or delayed discretionary spending in response to the impacts of COVID-19, owing to a rise in unemployment rates and diminished consumer confidence. Decreased retail traffic as a result of store closures, reduced operating hours, and social distancing restrictions could be noticed.
The increasing awareness about the importance of fitness and the increasing involvement of countries in sports and games are also driving the market. In terms of regional growth, North America is the highest revenue-generating region in the market, followed by Europe. Stronger distribution channels also drive the growth of the market.
The demand for athletic footwear has been bolstered by a growth in the number of specialty and franchised footwear stores and tie-ups between footwear brands and various retail chains.
Over the medium term, the athletic footwear market will be positively affected by various changing trends in various regions. Furthermore, the athletic footwear market will also be affected by the innovations made by market players in product development, for instance, smart footwear that calculates the calories burnt.
Key Market Trends
Growing Sports Participation and Influence of Athleisure
In line with the athleisure trend, consumers are increasingly seeking designer athletic shoes that include elements of sports design. Additionally, the continued shift toward more active lifestyles drives the demand for running and cycling footwear across the world.
The importance of sports activities, foremost for health reasons, the increasing influence of celebrity endorsement, and international sports events are encouraging the involvement of consumers in sports activities.
The increasing number of sport and fitness activities, such as aerobics, swimming, running, and yoga, as well as the increase in the number of women participating in fitness and sports activities, are making elegant and comfortable sports footwear suitable for daily sports activities popular. This is supporting the growth in athletic footwear sales among consumers, especially women. Also, athleisure has become more pervasive, as it has influenced the athletic footwear choice among millennial parents
South America the Fastest Growing Market for Athletic Footwear
Brazil has developed a significant sporting culture. Sports are not only widely played and popular among large segments of the population, but they are also diverse in nature. As a result, Brazil is one of the largest athletic footwear markets in the world, which is driving the sales of athletic footwear in South America.
Also, the rising health awareness, changing lifestyles, and increasing demand for comfortable footwear, coupled with the growing need for innovative footwear designs and expanding disposable income levels, have driven the consumer preference towards athletic footwear in recent years in South America.
The athletic footwear international companies and brands are significantly expanding in Brazil’s geography contributing to the athletic footwear market in the South Amercia, as Brazil offers exciting investment opportunities for the sports industry across all kinds of sports sectors. The company’s target audience is the high and middle income set population.
The athletic footwear market is competitive with the presence of various regional and global players. Companies compete on different factors, including product offerings, price, material quality, and marketing activities, to gain a competitive advantage in the market.
Similarly, vendors are introducing athletic footwear specifically designed for and targeted at women and kids. ?On the other hand, certain players have been expanding their geographical presence by acquiring or merging with the manufacturers in foreign markets.?
Companies are using digital and social media advertisements to make consumers aware of the new product launches in the market. The e-commerce channel has been growing majorly over the recent past, and it is one of the preferred channels for the major players operating in the market.? Adidas AG, Nike Inc., and Puma SE are some of the major players operating in the market studied.
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