Allsport Moden, the Austrian outdoor and winter sports apparel company, has decided to terminate production and distribution of the Allsport brand after the upcoming summer range. The company wants to take a break to rethink its business approach and to offer its services to other sports and outdoor companies, as a consultancy for specialist apparel development.
In a letter to its contacts, Allsport writes that it has decided to withdraw from the market, after delivery and proper after-sales service for the upcoming range. But the Austrian company's chief executive and owner, Kathrin Ludescher, explains that Allsport is moving away from the market temporarily to search for partners and to define another way forward.
Ludescher says that the market situation has become overly demanding for a relatively small-sized company with production in Europe, that is unable to command exclusive prices and struggles to deal with increasing demands from retailers. The company was also affected by its cost structure and its production in Europe, in the Czech Republic and Bulgaria.
Allsport launched a secondary brand, Kathrin Ludescher by Allsport, at the top end of the market, but this was apparently insufficient to make up for wider issues. Allsport's workforce has already been reduced from about 25 to 15 employees and it's likely to be reduced further as the company turns into a development consultancy, at least temporarily.
While Allsport Moden directly covered the Austrian and German markets, Ludescher says that distribution agreements have been terminated in other countries. Allsport was marketed in Switzerland, the Netherlands, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Russia and the U.S. market. The situation in the Russian market has been unfavorable for Allsport but the company was particularly hard hit by shrinking orders from Switzerland, which was a major market for the brand.
Allsport Moden was established in 1945 by Magnus Malin. He's the grandfather of Kathrin Ludescher, who took over the leadership in 1993 with her sister, Alexandra Ludescher-Piber. The company was previously run by their parents, Ludwig and Renate. Allsport says it has been attending Ispo since its inception, but Ludescher will do so as only a visitor in January.