For the first time, the meeting was held on Zoom, but included all of the business that the association usually covers at the event.
Each EOG department provided a summary of its activities during 2020, along with an outline of plans for 2021. Significant progress continues to be made in key initiatives, including work in retail, market research, CSR and sustainability, and the Single Use Plastics Project. There were updates from the European Outdoor Conservation Association and the It’s Great Out There Coalition, and a presentation from Messe Munich about planning for OutDoor by ISPO.
The board and executive team also updated members on specific actions that have been undertaken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These have included a sustained programme to inform and support members, and close liaison with stakeholders and partners across Europe to both deal with immediate issues and plan for the longer term recovery. Throughout the crisis, the EOG has ensured that the outdoor sector has been represented to international policy makers. Meanwhile, the association has taken measures to mitigate the impact of lost income due to the cancellation of events, with the support of trade show partner Messe Munich. Thanks to prudent cost controls and budget management in recent years, the EOG is in good financial health.
Three members of the EOG Board stepped down at the end of their terms of office – John Jansen (KEEN), Rainer Angstl (Sporthaus Schuster) and Ryan Gellert (Patagonia). Matt Gowar (Equip) and Hans-Hermann Deters (Sport2000) were elected to the board during the meeting, while association treasurer Michel Gogniat (Ternua), Oliver Pabst (Mammut) and Mathias Zaggl (W.L. Gore & Associates) were re-elected for second terms. Mark Held was confirmed as EOG President for a second term and on behalf of the membership, thanked John Jansen, Rainer Angstl and Ryan Gellert for their contributions to the association.
Arne Strate, EOG general secretary, comments: “As always, our Annual Assembly was a great opportunity to pause and reflect on the broad range of work that the EOG does. Of course, this year was different and unusual, but we were able to demonstrate to our members how we’ve been able to make good progress with core projects, while responding effectively to the pandemic. Everything that has happened during the last year has highlighted that, more than ever, collaboration is essential for addressing the most significant shared challenges that our industry faces. This is precisely why the EOG was founded and with the continued support of our members and external partners and stakeholders, I am confident that we can emerge from the pandemic and build a sustainable, successful future for the outdoor sector.”