Australia’s lucrative sporting goods industry is heading for a shake-up, with Decathlon’s first local site now open.
Photos: Instagram @decathlon
Good news, sports fans — Decathlon has opened it’s first Australian site in Sydney’s Tempe today.
The French-owned chain is the world’s largest sporting goods retail brand, and it has even been dubbed “the Aldi of activewear”.
Decathlon currently boasts 1200 stores in 30 countries worldwide, including in the United Kingdom, Asia and Europe.Decathlon employs 80,000 people worldwide, and that number is set to grow following it’s expansion Down Under.
In May, news.com.au reported that Decathlon’s launch was part of a broader national rollout, with Decathlon Australia CEO Olivier Robinet and CFO Sylvain Baudens confirming their plans to open “up to 100 stores nationally”.
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The initial plan was to open between two and five stores per year.
While it’s already possible to shop online at Decathlon, experts believe the rollout of physical stores were a sign that the sporting goods industry was booming in Australia.Retail expert Brian Walker from the Retail Doctor Group said Decathlon’s opening was part of another wave of globalisation of retail in Australia.
“Decathlon is a huge player. Australian sports retail has seen a domination of very good retail businesses such as Rebel and as Rebel became a category killer, we saw the decline of independent, smaller retailers,” he said.
“What we see with Decathlon is it’s very large scale and very strong on range and pricing, and it will certainly be a very valid competitor in the space.
“What will be key for them will be getting their location strategy right and not only will they be competing with independent sports stores like Rebel but also with online players like Amazon.
“They will be competitive in space, range and scale and Australian consumers will see competitive prices, which will benefit them.”
The Tempe site is more than 3800sq m in size and there will be more than 70 staff members on hand. It will sell more than 7000 products related to more than 70 different sports.
Located on the Princes Highway in Tempe, the store will open at 11am on Tuesday morning and there will be gifts and prizes up for grabs for some of the first shoppers through the doors.
It’s arrival is expected to shake-up Australia’s lucrative sports equipment market, which is worth $1.3 billion.
Sports shoes are currently worth $2.5 billion, while sportswear is worth $1.5 billion.Decathlon is expected to pose a threat to local sports retailers including Rebel, Amart and Kathmandu, and department stores like Kmart, Target and Big W.
Sketch comedy trio Skit Box have created a parody of women in active wear which has since gone viral. Courtesy Facebook/Skitbox.