2011 Speakers

Roger Zeng


President and founder of China Outdoor Retailer Association (CORA)

Topic: China the new Frontier 

Tuesday, October 11th - 9.00-10.00am


China is at the centre of most brands growth plans over the next décade. But to be successful, brands need to really understand China’s unique market dynamics. As with Mark Helds présentation on Europe and Frank Hugelmeyers on North America, Roger will bring his own local expérience and knowledge to revealing what are the key current trends in his own market. Roger brings an exceptional grasp of how the outdoor industry works in China for retailers, brands and manufacturers. His broad experience will be invaluable to understanding the complexities of doing business in China.

Edwin Koster


CEO Max Value

Topic: Social Accountability, better safe than sorry

Tuesday, October 11th - 10.40-11.20am



Corperate Social responsibility is not only about product but probably more importantly about people and morality. In today's smaller world with its greater understanding of the common good and open information companies need to ensure that their and their suppliers employees rights are upheld. Not only is this becoming a legal requirement but a brand value necessity as the internet can turn a local rumor into front page headlines overnight. Social Accountability international and  The Ethical Trading iniative (eti)  will both look at how brands can integrate this CSR requirement into their business practices.

Julia Hawkins


Ethical Trading (ETI)

Topic: Social Accountability, Better safe than Sorry 

Tuesday, October 11th - 11.20-12.00am


Corporate Social responsibility is not only about product but probably more importantly about people and morality. In today’s smaller world with its greater understanding of the common good and open information companies need to ensure that their and their suppliers’ employees’ rights are upheld. Not only is this becoming a legal requirement but a brand value necessity as the internet can turn a local rumour into front page headlines overnight. The Ethical Trading iniative (eti) and Social Accountability international and will both look at how brands can integrate this CSR requirement into their business practices. 

Douglas Kent

Douglas_Kent-1Supply Chain Council

Topic: Supply Chain Management, planning ahead

Tuesday, October 11th - 1.40-2.40pm 


What will the future supply chain look like? What impact will the changes in Asia have to your supply chain? What level of risk/ exposure does your company have and which of these should be mitigated? These questions and more will be answered in this presentation by Douglas Kent. The increased complexity, globalization, and outsourcing across the outdoor sector has subsequently also increased the potential for supply chain disruptions. The financial community is also less tolerant and more acutely aware of supply chain risk and the potential impact on business operations as well as valuation. This session examines the responses from hundreds of global companies to a recent supply chain survey and unveils the kinds of risks concerning most companies and their level of exposure and the impacts this may have on China and other Asian countries’ ability to continue as suppliers to Europe.

Walter Naeslund


CEO Honesty Stockholm Sweden

Topic: Modern Marketing Strategy: gossip, celebrities and the art of seduction.

Tuesday, October 11th - 3.20-4.20pm


Believe it or not even the most traditional brands will soon be relying on gossip, celebrities and the art of seduction as the basis for their marketing campaigns. Social communities, the bedrock of new media, are just a gigantic version of your close group of friends; and we all want to know what each other are doing, where, and with whom. And don't forget, the sports industry has had its own celebrities for years, we just called them athletes.
Walter will take us on a journey through gossip theory and how it is empowered by social media, and present a model for making gossip the cornerstone of your marketing strategy. We will have a look at a real life implementation of this strategy and see how a campaign by design can take on a life of its own.

Hervé Dessimoz & Thomas Buschi


 Topic: Presentation of the innovative Refuge du Goûter

Tuesday, October 11th - 4.20-4.50pm


The reconstruction of the Refuge du Goûter on the way to the summit of Mont Blanc, by the French Federation of Alpine Clubs has brought the values of sustainable development to 3’835m
By its size and the altitude, the Refuge is a major undertaking, construction began in summer 2010, and the end of works is planned for June 2012. The refuge is a symbol of what can be done in even the most extreme outdoor environment and will be a resource that the outdoor industry can use.

The ovoid architecture of the project was designed to fit to aesthetical and technical environmental constraints. The structure will be built from local wood and the metal outer casing is made of stainless steel parts, designed to withstand sustained winds of 240 km/h and wide temperature fluctuations.

Heiner Oberrauch

Heiner_OberrauchPresident of Oberalp - Salewa

Topic: Keynote address ispo dinner

Tuesday, October 11th - 10.00-10.30pm 


Heiner Oberrauch is of the same mould as Paul Petzl, last years ispo forum dinner speaker. Both come from families with deep roots in the outdoor industry and are owners as well as presidents of their businesses. Heiner will present a very personal and passionate view of the industry which has and continues to be the very centre of his life.

Heiner started laying the groundwork for his future career very early on. He was born in Bolzano on December 22, 1957. At nineteen, he opened the first “Sportler” store, with his brother Georg. His education in a trade institute and his family history played in his favor, the Oberrauch family had long been an institution in manufacturing and selling Loden with the Oberrauch Zitt brand had established their reputation..

Mark Held


Secretary General of the European Outdoor Group

 Topic: The Shape of Outdoor in Europe

Wednesday October 12th - 9.00-10.00am


Market Facts, figures and trends are vital to making better decisions, so this year the Forum will be presenting reports from the three big regional markets, Europe, North America and China. Each of the speakers will report on their markets overall performance and then drill down into the top ten most influential trends to give you the information you need to drive your global business forward.

For Europe Mark Held, secretary general of the European Outdoor Group, will present for the first time the headline results of the brand new European State of Trade Survey.Until now the European outdoor industry has lacked even the simplest information about the size of the market place in outdoor products. To address this issue the European Outdoor Group (EOG) launched a new initiative with the support of many of the major brands active in the European market, to create a survey that could be used as a benchmark for performance.

Eugenio Di Maria


Founder and CEO EDM Publications

Topic: Panel Debate, the future of retail 

Wednesday, October 12th - 10.40-12.00am


The continuing financial uncertainty, Asian sourcing problems, the growth of internet sales and unpredictable weather patterns, are just some of the pressures that are helping to create an unfamiliar retail environment. To survive and prosper in the ever changing market, retailers of outdoor products are continuarly developing new strategies in all aspects of their businesses.

For the first time ever a panel of CEO’s from some of the worlds leading retailers has been assembled to discus the global outdoor retail environment. The panel will look at how retailers are reacting in different parts of the world. What is the best practice in each region? Ccould solutions in one be adopted in another. Eugenio will moderate the panel and lead the discussions.

Heng Zhang


Founder and CEO Sanfo

Topic: Panel Debate, the future of retail

Wednesday, October 12th - 10.00-12.00am


Mr. Zhang Heng was born in 1970. After a university career, completing an undergraduate degree in Environmental Sciences at the prestigious University of Beijing and then an MBA at the University of Tsinghua (Shanghai), he created, in May 1997, one of the first outdoor sports retail companies in China, Sanfo Outdoors. Ahead of his time, Mr. Zhang Heng believed from the start in the outdoor sports market's potential. Shortly after, in 1998, he launched the Sanfo Outdoor Club, whose goal is to promote and increase the popularity of outdoor sports in China by organizing activities and events.

 Today, Mr. Zhang Heng is in charge of the largest outdoor sports retailer in China as well as a club with 100,000 active members. Sanfo Outdoors is a success story with revenues exceeding 100 million yuan per year (10.5 million euros). The company is booming, with a 40% anual growth rate (75% of this growth is generated by foreign brands).

Frederic Hufkens

frederick_hufkens1CEO of the A.S. Adventure Group

Topic: Panel Debate, the future of retail

Wednesday, October 12th - 10.40-12.00am



Frederic has been involved in the retail business for many years. From 1997 he was an advisor to the Halley Family who own approx 20% of Carrefour supermarkets. During this time he was involved in the purchase of G.I.B. the largest food retailer in Belgium, Super Mercados Norte in Argentina and a number of other food retailers. In 2002, he set up a family office/private Equity fund for the Halley family investing in specialty retail and started to buy retailers and brands such as Republic, a Street and Urban clothing retailer, in the UK with 100 stores and Jill Sander the German fashion brand.

David Labistour


CEO Mountain Equipment Co-op

Topic: Panel Debate, the future of retail

Wednesday, October 12th - 10.40-12.00am


David Labistour is the Chief Executive Officer of Mountain Equipment Co-op, Canada’s leading outdoor retailer. David brings both passion for outdoor adventure and extensive business experience to the position. Over the past 25 years he has worked in product development and retail management with companies such as Adidas, Marks & Spencer’s affiliate in South Africa, and Aritzia in Canada.

David is MEC’s first CEO to have been appointed from within the 40-year-old organization. In his former capacity as the senior manager of Buying and Design, David was instrumental in leading the renaissance of MEC-brand products as well as product sustainability initiatives. He enjoys backcountry skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, kite-boarding, and paddling.

Thomas Lipke


Managing Director and Stockholder of Globetrotter

 Topic: Panel Debate, the future of retail

Wednesday, October 12th - 10.40-12.00am


Thomas Lipke (53) is managing director and a shareholder of Globetrotter Ausrüstung one of Europe’s biggest outdoor retailers. Lipke has had over 30 years experience with Globetrotter in the outdoor business and since June 2010 has been the president of the German E-Commerce and Distance Selling Trade Association (bvh). Lipke started his career as a student at Globetrotter in 1980 and since 1991 has been a managing partner of the company. With a turnover of 230 million Euros in their last business year Globetrotter is a market leader within the European outdoor industry. Today, Globetrotter is a multi channel retailer and has retail branches in Hamburg, Berlin, Dresden, Frankfurt, Bonn, Cologne and Munich and with a total retail space of 34,500 square meters. 56 per cent of the company’s turnover is achieved in bricks and mortar and 44 per cent by mail order of which 80 per cent is via the Internet.

Alex Striler


Management Consultant and author "X Play Nation"

Topic: Capturing today's youth market 

Wednesday, October 12th - 1.40-2.20pm


The youth market is every brands Holy Grail, if you cannot successfully tap into tomorrows consumer then what future does a brand have. Alex will look at how brands from the action sports business industry , which have enjoyed phenomenol growth over the last décade, made themselves so attractive to this new consumer and how the marketing strategy and ethos of thèse types of brands can be adapted to encourage young consumers into traditional sports markets. One only has to look at the impact of freeski on the Alpine ski market to realise change comes to us all. 

Anne Laurent

Anne3General IP Counsel Europe for Amer Sports

Topic: Intellectual Property, the rising challenge

Wednesday, October 12th - 2.20-3.00pm 


The increase in intellectual property (IP) infringements has been having a huge impact on the outdoor industry. Modern communication methods are adding to the increasing import of counterfeits from the Far East to Europe by private people, retailers and criminal organizations. Anne Laurent from Amer Sports, representing the IP Committee of FESI, will brief us on the latest developments and on what brands can do to minimise the issues, she will also review the initiatives that a number of associations are taking that could help the outdoor industry tackle this major problem.