Final report

ISPO Munich 2020: The industry is taking responsibility

January 29, 2020

  • About 80,000 visitors from 120 countries
  • Sustainability continues to gain ground
  • New format: ISPO SDG Summit

About 80,000 visitors from all parts of the world flocked to ISPO Munich over the past four days to gain inspiration from the latest sports innovations, trends and products that were showcased in Messe München’s 18 halls. Sustainability has become increasingly important. This commitment to the environment demonstrated that ISPO Munich has become much more than a pure product show: It is a network that fuels partnerships and initiatives.

“The world is going through sweeping social change,” says Chairman and CEO of Messe München Klaus Dittrich. “Developments like climate change, globalization and polarization in our societies are so far-reaching that they trigger global discussions. We must find solutions to these problems before it is too late.”

The sporting goods industry understands its responsibility and focuses more than ever before on sustainably manufactured products and on the circular economy, something that encompasses a product’s entire life cycle. Product ideas ranged from a jacket made of plastic fished out of the world’s seas to vegan running shoes. But today’s consumers want something more than sustainable products. They also expect companies to increasingly practice a philosophy of purpose. “Platforms like ISPO Munich play a key role in launching initiatives and partnerships and raising awareness levels about the need to sustainably use our planet’s resources,” says Mark Held, the President of the European Outdoor Group (EOG). “We set up a new format designed to facilitate a discourse about important issues and to place it onto a stage for society to see—the ISPO SDG Summit. The integrative power of sports can help to build bridges and overcome hurdles,” says Dittrich. The summit will take place for the first time on June 29, 2020, in Munich parallel to OutDoor by ISPO. Its objective is to develop solutions and joint projects that promote the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). One of the summit’s first supporters is Tegla Loroupe, who received the ISPO Cup honoring her outstanding social commitment: Her foundation operates a sports sponsorship program for refugees. She will lead the Stateless Athletes team into the stadium at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Further information on the ISPO SDG Summit is available in the press area.

The running trend

People’s failure to exercise is one of the world’s major social challenges today. Running, one of the most popular sporting activities since the beginning of the 1970s, is one way to significantly reverse this trend. Leisure-time and hobby runners dominate the market, a place that continues to bring forth new brands and other innovations. The latest facts about the running market were presented to the audience at the 7th Runner’s World Running Symposium. With more than 300 attendees, every seat in the house was taken. The latest running shoe models and accessories were showcased in the new Shoe Village, an area that addressed the future market in the appropriate way.


Nearly 20 percent of people between the ages of 11 and 17 are not sufficiently physically active, according to a recent study by the World Health Organization. “We have to meet these target groups in places where their interests lie,” Dittrich says. For young people, these places are digital media, he added. One major opportunity in this regard is eSports with top athletes acting as role models for the young generation. esports have been an important aspect of ISPO Munich since 2019 and proved to be very popular this year as well.

Inspiration and creativity

The sporting goods industry demonstrated its creativity throughout the trade fair’s 18 halls. And there appears to be no limits in the textile segment: Function and fashion come together and are increasingly melding into a single unit. The Urban Lab has become the venue where the design community and creative individuals get together. It was one of the highlights of the fair. More and more brands have been signing up for the first time to showcase their products at the trade fair. This year’s newcomers included Sony, with its innovative technical materials, and Save the Duck, with its vegan clothing range.

ISPO Munich in numbers

Around 80,000 industry visitors from 120 countries came to Munich (2019: 80,200). The countries with the largest number of visitors (in this order) were Germany, Italy, Austria, France, Switzerland, Great Britain and the Russian Federation. The ratio of visitors from outside Germany rose to 70 percent (2019: 69 percent). There was an increase of visitors from France, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand. According to a survey carried out by market research company Gelszus Messe-Marktforschung among visitors, 45 percent of respondents believe that ISPO Munich will continue to play an increasingly important role.

2,850 exhibitors took part in the trade fair (2019: 2,926). For the first time, Toyota joined traditional sporting goods and outdoor brands at ISPO Munich and introduced its mobility concept to the international audience.

The next ISPO Munich will be held from January 28 to 31, 2021, in Munich. The ISPO Munich Sports Week is in full swing and will conclude with the Night Run in Olympiapark on February 1. More than 1,000 runners have already registered: a new record for the Night Run.


You will find more details and background information about the four days of the trade fair and industry news at Photo material can be found in the media portal. You will find all reports by ISPO TV on our website.

Related images

The industry is taking responsibility
Meeting place for designers and creative people: the Urban Lab