Ariston-Nord-West-Ring, Europe’s leading buying group for shoe retailers and the parent company of Sport 2000 Germany, is serious about getting into the outdoor footwear market. At GDS in Düsseldorf, the big trade show for mainly casual shoe retailers, the group revealed its plans to organize an in-house show dedicated to outdoor shoes for its affiliated members at its headquarters in Mainhausen, Germany.

The outdoor business is not necessarily big at the GDS fair, which targets mainly the shoe shops, but some outdoor-oriented brands exhibit there on a regular basis including Lowa, Meindl, Salomon, Kamik, Crocs as well as W.L. Gore and Sympatex.

ANWR intends to organize an in-house show especially designed for outdoor footwear. The first edition is scheduled for Feb. 25 and 26 along with other specialty buying days for children’s footwear, wellness products and price-oriented shoes. Some 15 brands of outdoor shoes are expected to show.

Company executives see outdoor footwear as being clearly under-represented in shoe stores; they argue that there might be a potential of 10 percent of total sales for this product range in German shoe stores. As a rule of thumb, the share of sales of sport shoes in footwear shops is usually in the high-single digits, but this figure normally also includes general sports footwear, especially from big brands like Adidas, Nike, Puma and so on.