EOS 2016 closes on a high note in Barcelona - Italy is announced as host for 2017

Following an inspirational, motivational and informative two-day programme in Barcelona, the fourth annual European Outdoor Summit (EOS) came to a close last week and was hailed a success by delegates, speakers and sponsors alike.

Designed to engage, inspire, promote and progress the outdoor industry, the EOS 2016, which received huge support from key industry brands from the outset, brought together over 250 outdoor professionals from across Europe and beyond to listen to keynote speeches, participate in break-out sessions, network and socialise with colleagues and piers from across the industry.

The Summit took place on 29th- 30th September at the Crowne Plaza Hotel and, as the event drew to a close, it was confirmed that the EOS 2017 will take place in Italy, in partnership with the Italian Outdoor Group and ASSOSPORT.

The central theme of this year's EOS was ‘AN INDUSTRY IN EVOLUTION', which considered the pace of change that is altering the industry. The programme was split into three parts to deliver a thought provoking and business focussed line up:  GET OUT! Growing Outdoor Participation, CHANGE UP! Doing Things Better and THINK UP!  Creating Value by Doing Things Right.

Officially opened by President of the European Outdoor Group (EOG), John Jansen, with a strong message about industry collaboration in the outdoor sector, the Summit offered delegates a stellar line-up of must-see speakers. Highlights included an incredibly compelling presentation from VP of Public Engagement for Patagonia, Rick Ridgeway, who addressed a full room and offered invaluable insight into the company’s alternative, yet highly successful approach to CSR, while Deputy Director-General for Education and Culture at the European Commission, Jens Nymand Christensen, spoke on the huge importance of a physically active population and the tools developed at EU level to promote sport and physical activity.

An enthusiastic and energetic speech was given by Microadventurer and Author Alastair Humphreys, who spoke about microadventures, which are short, simple, local and cheap - yet still fun, exciting, challenging, refreshing and rewarding and how they make adventure accessible to all. Frédéric Hufkens, CEO and Chairman of outdoor and adventure specialist A.S.Adventure, stirred delegates with his rousing presentation on the future of outdoor retailing, which discussed the choices that need to be made, and looked at progressive and positive options that could make outdoor retail a significantly differentiated sector. General Manager of the North Face EMEA, Arne Arens, together with CEO of the OIA UK, Andrew Denton, spoke about the opportunity to increase outdoor participation in Europe by finding new and innovative ways to get people active outdoors.

In addition to the keynote presentations, delegates also had the opportunity to participate in various topical break-out sessions, which offered further insight into how to better business. The first day was rounded off with tapas and beer at the iconic Fabrica Moritz micro-brewery, where delegates were able to relax, unwind and network.

Mark Held, General Secretary of Summit organiser, the EOG said: “This year’s European Outdoor Summit has been a resounding success and Barcelona provided a fantastic backdrop to the event.   The agenda was carefully structured to ensure that we tackled issues that were of importance to the industry, and the speakers, who were brought in to provide valuable insight and opinion on these topics, delivered on so many levels. As always, support for the event has been amazing and as a team we will take a lot of positives out of this and are already excited about the possibilities offered by working with the Italian Outdoor Group and ASSOSPORT for next year’s event in Italy.”

To find out more about the EOS visit www.europeanoutdoorsummit.com.