Messe Friedrichshafen, the organizer of the European OutDoor show and the driving force behind Asia Outdoor, the annual Chinese outdoor fair held in Nanjing, has put out a press release confirming that some big players in the Chinese outdoor market will show exclusively at the Nanjing show in the summer. This means that they are not going to exhibit at the new Ispo Shanghai fair, but may continue to show at Ispo Beijing in the winter.

The press release mentions Columbia, Kailas, MobiGarden, Northland, Scaler, Toread and The North Face. Most are members of COA, the China Outdoor Association, which has been backing the show from the beginning and has now voted to continue to support it at its latest annual general meeting. The other members of the organization are basically the organizers of the Asia Outdoor and Asia Bike shows in Nanjing. The companies mentioned by Messe Friedrichshafen are important in the market and do have weight in the local business.

The motivation of the release is obvious: As reported, Messe München will have its first Ispo Shanghai show a few weeks earlier than Asia Outdoor. The new general sporting goods trade fair will premier on July 2-4 next year, and the tenth edition of Asia Outdoor will be run in Nanjing on July 23-26.

Messe München declined to comment at this stage.

Meanwhile, the organizers of Asia Outdoor and its major exhibitors bundled in COA have changed their minds concerning the launch of the first “COA China Outdoor Summit.” Our reporting on this event in the last issue was correct at the time, but two major changes about the organization of this industry meeting have occurred in the meantime: First, the summit will not take place during the Nanjing show as previously announced, but just before, on July 21-22. Second, the event will no longer be organized by German Messe, the joint venture with Messe Friedrichshafen behind the Asia Outdoor show. Instead, the event will be run by COA on its own. Knut Jaeger, the founder of the show and chairman of German Messe told this publication that it was important that the summit should be an independent event for the Chinese industry. Therefore, as with the European Outdoor Summit, it makes more sense to have the summit organized by an industry federation than by a trade show company.

Additional support for the conference will come from the City of Nanjing, which is playing host to the Youth Olympic Games this year, and the Jiangsu Outdoor Sport Association.