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Industry Insight
News and Advice from our Sponsors


Here you'll find the 10 most recent articles from our sponsors, covering about the past 2 weeks.


To find older articles from our sponsors, please use the search bar below, and type the company name, author name or any appropriate keyword.

 


Webcast: Internal Controls to Increase the Value of Your Business

By John Snell, Partner, Moss Adams

Preparing for a Sale:  Internal Controls to Increase the Value of Your Business

Tuesday, December 2
10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. PT
Free Webcast | 1 CPE Credit

Effective internal controls are the foundation of a solidly run business, and buyers will review your processes and procedures prior to investing. Internal control failures or ineffective systems will drive your value down.

During this webcast, our experts will examine the internal controls needed for increasing your value and creating the greatest valuation for your company. We will identify opportunities to improve your business through the automation of systems, increased processing efficiency and the overall improvement of internal controls prior to private investor or private equity considerations that will help you streamline these critical paths to market.
 
Please forward this invitation to those on your team that will benefit from the information.

Presenters  
John Snell, CIA
Partner | Moss Adams LLP

Steven Gin, CISA
Senior Manager | Moss Adams LLP

Register here.

Agenda Long Beach is Less Than 7 Weeks Away

By Mike Carter, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, AGENDA Trade Show

AGENDA LONG BEACH

January 5-6, 2015 | 9am - 6pm

Long Beach Convention Center

750+ BRANDS

PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED BY DECEMBER 30
REGISTER TO ATTEND AGENDA
 
Centrally located directly between Los Angeles and Orange County, Long Beach exists as a point of intersection between action sports and streetwear. Long Beach has a rich history of trade shows and is where the very first Agenda show was ever held. Since 2012, Long Beach has been the home of Agenda's two largest bi-annual shows.

Covering 250,000 square feet of space in the Long Beach Convention Center and showcasing over 750 brands, Agenda Long Beach is our flagship show with the most diverse product offering. Categories include lifestyle, streetwear, contemporary, women's, accessories, action sports, outdoor, footwear, and both surf and skate hardgoods.

The show also includes peripheral marketing events, industry parties, and the Agenda Emerge conference. Agenda Long Beach is attended by 10,000+ buyers, media, distributors, and influencers from 49 states and 50 countries. If you are only able to attend one trade show this year, it should be Agenda Long Beach!

Middle Market Retailers Remain Cautiously Optimistic for the Holiday Season

By Mitchell Cohen, Managing Director, CIT Trade Finance

An annual retail outlook study of more than 250 senior middle market retail executives conducted by CIT Group Inc., a leading provider of commercial lending and leasing services, found cautious optimism among respondents.

Fifty-five percent of executives anticipate their total holiday sales will increase by 6% or more in 2014, as compared to only a third last year. In addition, more than 60% of respondents expect their annual sales will increase by 6% or more this year, as compared to only 42% in 2013.The online study, conducted by Harris Poll, concluded in October 2014.

“Looking toward the upcoming holiday season, middle market retailers are cautiously optimistic as U.S. consumer confidence continues to rise,” said Jon Lucas, President of CIT Commercial Services. “Retailers are also adapting to the changing attitudes of the American consumer through investments in new products, expanding their digital strategy and utilizing social media to maximize the consumer buying experience.”

Burt Feinberg, President of CIT Corporate Finance, Commercial & Industrial, added, “Our study shows that most respondents do not believe a brick-and-mortar-only store strategy is sustainable in the long-term without a focus on building a complementary e-commerce and digital strategy. In addition, nearly half of the respondents were skeptical as to the economic viability of the ‘American Mall’ over the long-term due to reduced foot traffic resulting from the increased popularity of e-commerce and the lackluster performance of certain anchor tenants.”

Other insights from the CIT Retail Outlook include:

  •  Online Holiday Shopping Reigns Supreme: A majority (53%) of retailers expect online shopping to have the biggest incremental impact on holiday sales, while 43% expect in-store and online discounts to have a notable impact.
  • Holiday Season Starting Earlier: Over the past five years, 64% of retailers have moved their holiday promotions earlier, for most by two weeks or more.
  • Holiday Staffing Expected to Increase: More than half of retailers plan to increase staff during the holiday season – 60% expect to increase the number of hourly employees and 54% expect to increase staff specific to internet/mobile sales channels.
  • Investments Focused on Innovation, Marketing and Online/Mobile: Retailers remain focused on making investments to increase sales, including new product development (56%), marketing (49%), online presence (48%) and social media (46%).
  • ‘Made in America’ Important to Consumers: A majority of retailers (55%) indicated that U.S. consumers care more than ever about buying products that are exclusively ‘Made in America.’
  • Financial Condition Healthier Today: Eighty-two percent of retailers indicated that their company’s current financial condition was “healthy” or “very healthy” as compared to seventy percent in 2013.
  • Online Shopping Driving Growth: Retailers indicated that their revenue is growing from website traffic (73%) even more so than in-store sales (57%) and catalog sales (27%). Many believe the top uses by consumers for online/mobile channels are for comparing prices (82%) and shipping items (70%). However, the top uses for brick-and-mortar channels are viewed as purchasing items (72%) and making returns (67%).
  • Mobile Apps Provide an Edge: More than 80% of retail executives (81%) believe that those who have mobile apps have an advantage over retailers who do not. Today, on average, about 6% of retailers’ sales are generated via mobile. Only 9% of retailers today say mobile generates over 15% of their sales, while 26% of retailers anticipate that over 15% of their sales will come from mobile in one to three years.
  •  Social Media Important to Brand Awareness: Seven in ten retailers believe social media is important to building their brand awareness (71%) and customer loyalty (70%). Among retailers, 32% consider themselves “advanced” and 21% consider themselves “expert” when it comes to social media strategies. Last year, the majority classified themselves as “intermediate” (42%) or “beginner” (16%).

Download a full copy of the report and related infographics here.

 

Schedule Released for Inaugural INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE Daylong Event as Part of 2015 SIA Snow Show

By Elizabeth Hurst, Communications & Public Relations Manager, SnowSports Industry America (SIA)

SnowSports Industries America (SIA), the snow sports industry’s member-owned trade association, has released the final seminar schedule for January 28th’s INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE daylong educational event; a brand-new addition to the 2015 SIA Snow Show. This opportunity gives members of the snow sports community a chance to prep for the Show with a day of free market intelligence, industry education and keynote inspiration.

The newly released INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE seminar schedule will offer participants insight into the latest trends, consumer behavior, retail data, design/production, digital marketing, social media, and customer connection. Complementing the diverse and industry-focused list of session offerings, 2014 Paralympic Bronze Medalist Amy Purdy will offer the evening’s keynote address. The incredible optimism and energy Purdy brings to her presentation makes this a can’t-miss event.

The day will begin with the highly popular Category Research Seminars, hardgoods and softgoods, presented by SIA’s Director of Research, Kelly Davis. Davis will also share the initial results of the Downhill Consumer Intelligence Project (DCIP), a groundbreaking new view into snow sports consumer behavior that will enhance participants’ understanding of the market and help them make decisions for the season and beyond.

Lunch will be provided to all INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE attendees with keynote speaker Brad Montgomery presenting Profiting from Happiness. Montgomery makes the case for happiness as a tool for economic growth. In his interactive presentation, Montgomery teaches specific techniques designed to increase job satisfaction, which can translate directly to better performance.

The detailed list of INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE breakout sessions include seminars on increasing sales, connecting with customers, strategic use of social media, product development and more. Highlights include the Wealthy Retailer series, which offers a free assessment at the beginning of the day and then guide retailers through various tracks that will help them improve their bottom lines and decision making; the Birds and the Bees of Production series will give production professionals strategies for brand creation and product design; and Growing Snow Sports- Attracting Today’s Time-Starved Consumer will feature a panel of influential representatives from the retailer, resort, sales rep, and supplier communities. They will host a panel representing all four areas of the industry to discuss the current climate of our industry and how to best prepare for the years ahead.

A major highlight of the day is keynote speaker Amy Purdy’s presentation, The Power of Imagination. Purdy is currently a motivational speaker, and most recently appeared with Oprah Winfrey’s‘The Life you Want’ Tour. She is also the top ranked adaptive snowboarder in the U.S., a three-time World Cup Para-Snowboard winner and 2014 Paralympic Bronze Medalist. Three days after winning a bronze medal at the 2014 Sochi Paralympics, Amy became a breakout star and an eventual runner-up of ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. In her inspiring presentation, Purdy talks about the power of imagination, and explains how our lives are not determined by what happens to us, but by the choices we make.

“Snowboarding has been a part of my life since I was a young girl,” Purdy said. “My passion for riding carried me out of my darkest days, around the world, and onto the Podium at the Paralympic Games. I’ve been coming to the SIA Snow Show since the very  beginning and I know this event is packed with people who share my passion for snow sports. I’m honored to be invited to share my story and am looking forward to an amazing few days in Denver.”

During INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE, The ASSEMBLY will also convene for its annual forum for mountain tourism industry’s stakeholders, and job seekers will flock to the annual Shmooz industry job fair, hosted by SIA and Malakye.com. To wrap it all up, the All-Industry Nite will feature several industry-only parties and events throughout downtown Denver. INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE is open to all Snow Show attendees, included in their badge registration.

Daytime/evening events and seminar planning will continue with additional information and updates can be found at the INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE section of the Snow Show website at SIAsnowshow.com/jan28. Follow SIA on Instagram, Facebook and join the conversation about INDUSTRY + INTELLIGENCE on Twitter using #SIA15intel.

 

Friedman Stroffe & Gerard represents action sports apparel company Brixton in investment deal with Altamont Capital Partners

By Bryan Friedman, Partner, and Jennifer Stroffe, Associate, Friedman Stroffe & Gerard, P.C.

Brixton, an Oceanside-based lifestyle apparel company, has announced a partnership with investment firm Altamont Capital Partners to support the company’s continued growth and development. Friedman Stroffe & Gerard, P.C. partner Bryan Friedman and associate Jennifer Stroffe represented Brixton in all legal aspects of the transaction. Financial terms of the agreement will not be disclosed.

Brixton is a skate, surf and streetwear apparel brand founded in 2004 by Jason Young, David Stoddard and Mike Chapin. After five years of focusing on the headwear business, the Brixton brand soon expanded into select apparel pieces to meet growing demand. The growth in apparel soon matched the growth in headwear, and today Brixton is on-track to continue to expand the business both in terms of product breadth and geography. Altamont Capital Partners is a private investment firm based in the San Francisco Bay Area with over $1 billion of capital under management. Altamont is focused on investing in middle market businesses where it can partner with leading management teams to help its portfolio companies reach their full potential. The firm’s principals have significant experience building business success stories across a range of industries including financial services government services consumer/retail industrials and healthcare.

Friedman Stroffe & Gerard, P.C. is a full-service business law firm representing domestic and foreign clients (from corporations listed on national and regional stock exchanges to family owned businesses and individuals) in a wide variety of business transactions and litigation matters. Members of the firm have worked as in-house attorneys or in other senior executive positions in the business arena and use that knowledge and "hands-on" experience to analyze and solve clients’ legal problems. The firm’s practice groups include: Corporate & Business, Intellectual Property, Real Estate & Construction, Litigation, Employment & Labor, and Tax & Estate Planning.

"Perfect Storm" of Factors Causing Delays at Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach

By Natalie Steele, Owner, Steele Logistics

Photo courtesy of the Port of Los Angeles

Container ships are backed up once again off the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach waiting for days for a berth as gridlock continues at the largest port complex in the Americas.  There is a "perfect storm" of reasons for the delays.

Container ship traffic is relatively high at the port complex as ships in the Trans-Pacific trade are getting consistently larger with increased volumes, requiring longer times at berth, often as many as four days, before ships can be unloaded, reloaded and sent back out to sea. 

Alliance partners are spreading out their vessel calls over multiple terminals in Los Angeles-Long Beach, creating a logistical nightmare for truckers and cargo interests attempting to match the right chassis with the right containers.

Severe terminal congestion throughout the port increases wait times where shippers say it's taking sometimes weeks to evacuate containers from terminals due to a shortage of chassis, drayage drivers, rail cars, and, most recently, slowdowns by members of the ILWU.  Average truck turn times at the terminals is now up to 140 minutes.  Efforts to fix the congestion problem in Southern California will fall short until the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) finalize a new contract.

"Escalating its use of orchestrated job actions that have already crippled terminal operations at Pacific Northwest ports, the ILWU has now targeted the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach by unilaterally refusing to dispatch hundreds of qualified, skilled workers for critically important positions transporting containers in terminal yards at the nation's largest port complex," according to a press relase from the PMA. 

In the Pacific Northwest ports of Tacoma and Seattle, continuing slowdowns have resulted in terminal productivity being reduced by an average of 40% to 60%.  Carriers are trying to divert cargo to Southern California, which will further exacerbate the gridlock there.

KNOWSHOW Retail Registration Now Open

By Perry Pugh, General Manager, KNOWSHOW

Ten Years Eh?
Time to register for the KNOWSHOW

Time sure flies. In 2005 we set out to create a market that addressed the needs of a growing niche market of brands and independent action sport retailers. 10 years later that market is no longer niche and the show has grown to include some of the best lifestyle fashion, surf and street wear brands offered to Canadian retailers.

We look forward to celebrating these ten years with all of the brands and retailers that have made the KNOWSHOW what it is. Look forward to new show experiences, events and special surprises to be unveiled along the way.

We can't wait to see you all!

Register your shop today!

Conquering Chaos: A Guide to Maximizing Your Tradeshow Experience

By Rebecca Lerner, Head of Content, NuORDER

While tradeshows are a critical component of your marketing and sales initiatives, they are a big investment to attend, from both a financial and energy perspective.

Before you put dollars and hours into a tradeshow, take a few minutes to read our article, which can help you to understand and prepare for the various dynamics that come along with tradeshows so you can optimize your investment.

"Ditch the Paper at Tradeshows" explains how to choose the right tradeshows, focus on the right relationships, and make your brand stand out at your booth. It also details how to be sure you meet the right people at the show, and how to follow through flawlessly for optimal sales.

Click here to learn more.

Party at SHAAC, November 15th, to Launch New Exhibit "Hap Jacobs: Celebrating 60 Years of Shaping"

By John Bernards, Director of Development, SHACC


On Saturday, November 15th at 5:00pm, Surfing Heritage and Culture Center (SHACC) will unveil its newest exhibit: "Hap Jacobs: Celebrating 60 Years of Shaping."
 
Admission is free to SHACC members and $5 for non-members. Doors open at 5:00 pm. A no-host bar will feature Primo Beer and wines from Longboard Vineyards, and Wahoo's Fish Tacos will cater some tasty food.
 
"SHACC is stoked to have this opportunity to pay tribute to Hap," said Paul Strauch, Executive Director. "He's a legendary surfboard builder and was one of the finest craftsmen in the industry - from the late 1950s until 1971 when he made a career transition into commercial fishing."
 
According to SHACC Curator/Creative Director, Barry Haun, the new exhibit showcases over two dozen Jacobs surfboards, representing the progression of coveted models made famous by one of the best surf teams ever assembled. "From classic balsa boards through transition era boards, the exhibit showcases many of Jacobs' most popular and innovative board designs.", Haun said.
 
After amicably ending his five-year business partnership with Dale Velzy, Jacobs opened the Jacobs Surfboards shop in Hermosa Beach at 422 Pacific Coast Highway in 1960. These were the "golden years" of surfing.
 
By crafting some of the best boards available, Jacobs attracted a stellar team of riders, including Miki Dora, David Nuuhiwa, Lance Carson, Robert August, Mike Purpus, Paul Strauch, Johnny Fain, Dru Harrison, Henry Ford, Sparky Hudson, Kemp Aaberg and others.
 
In 1990, after a 20-year hiatus from shaping, a long-time friend and team rider gave Jacobs an old planer that had once belonged to Ben Aipa, and coaxed Hap into shaping again. Jacobs set up shop in the Shoreline Glassing facility in Hermosa and picked up where he had left off. He hired a young shaper, Matt Calvani, and helped mentor him to hone his craft. Calvani eventually assumed the shaping for several Jacobs surfboard models. Calvani has since emerged as a highly respected craftsman, and continues to build boards for the Jacobs, Bing, and Cooperfish labels.  

SHACC is asking that all attendees refrain from bringing memorabilia and requesting autographs, so that Hap can relax and enjoy the evening.

Meet Surfrider Foundation's New CEO, Chad Nelsen

By Katie Ferguson, Communications Manager, Surfrider Foundation

The Surfrider Foundation Board of Directors recently announced that Environmental Director, Dr. Chad Nelsen, has been selected as the Chief Executive Officer of the Surfrider Foundation, the largest grassroots nonprofit organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of our oceans, waves and beaches.

“Chad’s 16 years at the Surfrider Foundation as the Environmental Director has been marked by outstanding stewardship of our conservation mission,” Board of Directors Chair Liisa Pierce Fiedelholtz shared. “Nelsen’s proven track-record of leading high impact campaigns has clearly demonstrated his ability to significantly build the reach of this incredible organization.”

Effective on Monday, September 29, Nelsen will lead the Surfrider Foundation to support its 250,000-plus supporters, activists, and members, including 84 Surfrider Chapters around the country. He will work closely with the staff and the Board of Directors to develop a strategic plan that will grow and strengthen the organization.

“I am extremely honored to lead the Surfrider Foundation,” said Nelsen. “Our mission to protect our coasts is vital, and the strength and dedication of our grassroots activist network is the key to our success."

Nelsen is very engaged in the environmental nonprofit community. He currently serves as the Board President for Save the Waves, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving the coastal environment, with an emphasis on surf zone protection. He is also a Director at The Coastal Society, an international society that addresses technical, policy, educational, and management issues that relate to coastal areas.

He received a Doctorate from the University of California, Los Angeles, a Master’s of Environmental Management from Duke University’s Nicholas School for the Environment, and a Bachelor’s of Science from Brown University.

On behalf of the Surfrider Foundation, the Board of Directors would like to thank outgoing CEO, Jim Moriarty, for his nine years of service to the organization and for his leadership, vision, and dedication.

For more information about the Surfrider Foundation, please visit surfrider.org.