117 Waterworks Way
Irvine, Ca. 92618
Questions answered by International Outerwear Product Manager Steven Adams
What are the three biggest trends you see shaping the market and what you are doing to meet them?
Bold colorblocking, patterns; like tie dye, camo, and ethnic, and a mix of fabrics will be represented throughout our product range. We are continuing to bring great relevant outerwear to the market. Keeping riders happy on the slopes.
How has the market evolved over the last year and how do you see things changing in the years ahead?
Snowboarders are more product savvy than perhaps ever before, and know exactly what features and aesthetics they want or need from the products before the make a purchase. There is so much competition in the market today; brands have to deliver the complete package at retail to keep consumers coming back every season.
Has sales forecasting changed for your company? If so, how has it changed?
Inventory for winter sports has become a real issue, by working closely with our sales force and retailers, we hope to avoid any excess product in the market. Pre-lining our key accounts and working closely with our global sales managers earlier has become a major focus. Global forecast are more important than ever, and not only for the factories and keeping on time deliveries.
What lessons have you learned with bookings for this season and how will you apply those to next?
Bookings this past season reflected the poor snowfall and inventory problems most retailers were facing. We will take a conservative approach again to help get our retailer partners back on track for the next season. And pray for snow! A strong winter means good sell through, which means good bookings for the next season!
Have you changed your production or distribution models at all from last season? If so, why and how have you changed them?
By globalizing our buying and production process we have helped our supply chain run the more efficiently. Billabong continues to look for ways to help make a positive impact on our suppliers. The distribution plan for next season remains more or less the same. We will stay focused on our current retailers and focus on how we can help them be more successful.
How are you working with retailers to help ensure strong margins, the right amount of product in the marketplace, and terms that set them up for success?
We are working closely with all our retailers and listening to their feedback, not only on our product, but also on their entire retail condition. By managing a focused offering and not adding more product every season, we control the product going into the market.
What fabrics, colors, fits, and technologies are you focusing on for next season?
Or main focus is to have our outerwear line really compliment the Billabong apparel line, and leverage the strength of our overall brand offering. We worked closely with our boardshort and apparel teams to bring a cohesive brand message in terms of color and trend. This season, we have worked closely in partnership with our suppliers to introduce branded technologies specific to the Billabong snow range, with a focus on fabrics and waterproofing. For this next season, we will be offering more fits in both men’s and women’s than before, giving a broader offering to meet the market needs.
What are pricepoints doing?
Snow consumers have to be extremely confident with the value of the product. We focus on keeping our retail prices aggressive, and adding price per value features throughout our entire line.
Are you taking any steps to minimize your environmental impact? If so, what are some of these steps?
Billabong has a combination of actions we are taking to improve the environmental and social outcomes throughout our business. These include our ongoing work with Social Accountability International’s SA8000 throughout out supply chain, the global carbon footprint of our business, supporting environmental initiatives, as well as, supporting social activities.
What are you doing to promote the growth of snowboarding and the next generation of riders (making kids gear, offering educational programs, etc.)?
Sponsoring young riders, supporting them in snowboarding and providing them a platform that goes beyond just riding.
What’s in your crystal ball for 2013/2014?
SNOW! Powder for everyone!
What do you hope to contribute to snowboarding?
Billabong has a lifelong dedication to snowboarding, and a long-term commitment to the riders. Our hope is to continue to be an influential brand through great product, meaningful events, sponsorships, and by supporting the global snowboard community.