Report Details

Global Sports Apparel Market (by Product Type, End User, Distribution Channel, & Region): Insights and Forecast with Potential Impact of COVID-19 (2022-2026)

  • Published: 7th Oct 2023
  • Pages: 168
  • Format : Pdf

Market Insight:

Sports apparel has gained in popularity in recent years. With notable athletes supporting and wearing top brands, sports apparel can be found almost anyplace. Wearing sports labels as a fashion statement has recently become 'trendy’. There is also a significant movement towards retail and online shopping. The pandemic has increased consumers' proclivity to purchase athletic items online, and this trend is here to stay.

Furthermore, there has been a rise in the number of individuals interested in health and fitness in recent years, as well as a rise in the number of people going to gyms, where young consumers desire to not only be fit but also look good. This factor has increased and continues to boost the demand for sports apparel, across the world. The global sports apparel market is likely to reach US$208.47 billion in 2023, growing at a CAGR of 6.10% during the forecast period.

Segment Covered:   

  • By Product: On the basis of product, the report identifies four segments of the global sports apparel market: pants & tights, tops & t-shirts, surf & swimwear, and sweaters & hoodies. The pants & tights segment held the largest share in global sports apparel market, owing to convenience and comfort of using sports pants & tights.
  • By End User: The market report provides the bifurcation of the global sports apparel market into three segments in terms of end user: men, women, and children. Men segment held the maximum share in sports apparel market, owing to increasing number of men involved in various outdoor activities. Women segment is expected to grow at a significant CAGR during the forecasted period, driven by the rising number of sports designed specifically for women.
  • By Distribution Channel: The report further offers the categorization based on the distribution channel of the sports apparel: brand outlets, e-commerce, supermarkets/hypermarkets, and discount stores. The e-commerce segment is the fastest growing segment during the forecasted period, as e-commerce helped sports apparel and sports companies to contact new customers and manage their product catalogues more effectively. Nike and adidas have been working to significantly increase both retail and e-commerce as a percent of total sales in recent years by limiting their wholesale exposure to only key strategic partners and investing heavily in their digital capabilities.      

Geographic Coverage: 

According to this report, the global market can be divided into five major regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa. The countries covered in North America region are the US, Canada, and Mexico, while Europe includes Germany, UK, France, and Rest of Europe. Moreover, China, Japan, India, and Rest of Asia Pacific are included in the Asia Pacific region.

North America enjoyed the major share of the global market share, primarily owing to the increasing urban population, rising participation in different physical activities like cycling, hiking, yoga, gym, etc. Asia Pacific sports apparel industry is expected to grow at significant rate due to presence of larger number of young population, and brands carrying out localized promotion strategy to shift consumers from unbranded to branded products. Within Asia Pacific, China has been one of the fastest growing markets in the sports apparel industry.

Top Impacting Factors:

Growth Drivers

  • Increase in Gen Z Income   
  • Growing Penetration of E-Commerce    
  • Increasing Health Consciousness Among People 
  • Growing Popularity of Athleisure      

Challenges

  • Competition from Counterfeit Stores  
  • Degree of Competition       

Trends

  • Rise in Usage of Blockchain Solutions 
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Designing Apparels 
  • Celebrity Brand Ambassadors for Sports Apparel 
  • Technology for Personalization and Smart Clothing         

Driver: Increase in Gen Z Income

Globally, Generation Z, also known as centennials, has become increasingly fashion conscious with an impulse of being trendy. Hence, this demographic is the major growth driver of global apparel industry. The Generation Z tend to segregate the demand for apparel as per the usage and need; they do not have the tendency to follow ‘one-for-all’ fundamental in apparels. The Generation Z is known for their impulse to invest into something trendy, conducive, comfortable, and easy to carry. This notion drives their demand towards sports apparel more for fashion purpose than performance.  Gen Z is the major target of apparel industry, particularly for sportswear as this demographic is highly indulged in some or the other form of physical activity because of health consciousness. Thus, rising income of Gen Z supported the demand for sports apparel.

  • Challenge: Competition from Counterfeit Stores 

As the technological capabilities in textile production countries is increasing (like Thailand, Turkey, Taiwan, etc.), so does the quality of counterfeit products. Commercial brands facing a tough fight from counterfeit stores, especially in developing regions as the markets there are price sensitive. Even though brands like Nike, Puma, and Adidas have a global appeal but as they can’t reach every nook and corner of a region; in that case, the counterfeit stores can easily emerge as a winner, without having to pay any royalty fees to the brand. Beauty of selling a counterfeit product manufactures and sellers doesn’t have to bear any royalty fees or franchise fees (which ranges from US$25,000 to US$50,000). So, in a nutshell commercial brands are facing tough a competition from counterfeit products, as they not only losing the market share in developing and emerging economies but also loosing much earned franchise fees as well. Thus, it can be said that counterfeit stores are posing as a threat to the market.

  • Trend: Celebrity Brand Ambassadors for Sports Apparel

The sports apparel industry is spending an enormous amount on advertising, promotion and celebrity brand ambassadors which rapidly influencing the consumers to engage in sports and fitness activities. Furthermore, the collaboration of sport personality with sports apparel company is persuading the customers to purchase sports apparel. Creative and innovative marketing and business strategies are predicted to accelerate sports apparel market growth.   

The COVID-19 Analysis:   

The global sports apparel market was impacted in many ways by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of the pandemic, the market saw supply chain disruption, a significant fall in orders from European and Northern American consumers, material shortages, companies faced by low cash flow, and other factors that had a significant negative influence on the overall market. However, several positive developments in consumer behavior toward the business, such as Athleisure, community-based exercise and physical activity, sustainability, social media influencers as marketing assets, and localization, have had and are expected to have a greater impact on the market in the post COVID era.

Analysis of Key Players:        

Global sports apparel market is fragmented with the presence of many players. Some of the prominent players are Nike, VF Corporation, Adidas, and many more. The growing demand for sports apparel has led to the development of innovative product at an affordable price. Players operating in the industry actively implement product development and corporate strategies to maintain their competitive positioning in the market. Further, the companies entering sports apparel market are focusing on developing high quality product at an affordable price. Further, key players of the sports apparel market are: 

  • NIKE, Inc., 
  • Adidas AG, 
  • PUMA SE, 
  • Under Armour, Inc., 
  • ASICS Corporation, 
  • Lululemon Athletica Inc., 
  • Fila Holdings Corp. and Subsidiaries, 
  • New Balance Athletics Inc., 
  • Columbia Sportswear Company, 
  • Li Ning Company Ltd., 
  • Umbro
  • VF Corporation, and 
  • Yonex Co., Ltd.

With the M&A market in the sports apparel market heating up, there are a few crucial factors that make a deal worthwhile. Recently, segments such as activewear and athleisure have been identified as a fast-growing segment within sports apparel, which is a good sign for a larger company trying to diversify their portfolio. For example, Levi Strauss & Co. announced the acquisition of Beyond Yoga, a lifestyle apparel company. Meanwhile, while Adidas divests the US brand from its portfolio. Reebok was absorbed by Authentic Brands Group, an American holding company whose wide portfolio of over 50 brands also includes Aéropostale, Nautica, and Volcom. Adidas announced in August 2021 that it would sell Reebok to ABG for US$2.5 billion; the acquisition was finalized on March 01, 2022. In addition, Lululemon's acquisition of Mirror provided the company with a digital offering to augment its core fitness-apparel division. Through studios and community-based workshops, Lululemon has also experimented with nutrition, mindfulness, and exercise offerings in stores. These moves appear to be consistent with the company's brand messaging.

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