The Top National stories and the Latest headlines across the Active Lifestyle Market for the week of September 21, 2020 covered in the SGB Updates — delivered to your inbox every business day.


September 25, 2020

Costco’s Q4 Profits Climb 27 Percent
Costco Inc. reported earnings rose 26.6 percent in the fourth quarter ended August 30 as sales grew 12.5 percent. Read more

Johnson Outdoors Announces Cash Dividend Increase
David Johnson, CFO, said, “Johnson Outdoors’ balance sheet remains strong, and the dividend increase reflects our confidence in our business performance and strategic plans.” Read more

Vuori Achieves Climate Neutral Certification
Vuori, the technical performance apparel brand, has successfully achieved Climate Neutral Certified status by measuring its 2019 greenhouse gas emissions footprint, purchasing carbon credits to offset that footprint, and implementing plans to reduce emissions this year and beyond. Read more

Asics Joins RE100
Asics announced that it has joined RE100, the global environmental initiative composed of member companies committed to relying solely on renewable energy for electricity in their businesses. As a member company of RE100, Asics will aim to use only renewable electricity across all Group companies by 2050. Read more

NFHS, NFL Announce Partnership To Promote High School Football
The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and the National Football League (NFL) have announced a partnership to promote growth and support for football at the high school level. Read more

Sportsman’s Warehouse Acquires Two More Field & Stream Stores
Sportsman’s Warehouse Holdings Inc. announced that it has entered into agreements with Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc. to purchase two Field & Stream locations in Erie, PA and Charleston, SC. Read more

Perry Ellis Extends Accessories Partnership With PGA Tour
Perry Ellis International’s golf division (PEI Golf) announced an extension of its license agreement with the PGA Tour to produce golf accessories and training aids under the PGA Tour brand, as well as the addition of important new product categories and initiatives. The parties agreed to extend the license agreement, which was initially set to expire in 2022, through December 31, 2025. Read more

›Smith Integrates Customer-Service Team
Smith Optics incorporated its Consumer & Dealer Services division within its Portland-based headquarters. Joining the product, marketing and sales departments, the customer-facing support team integrates into the hub of the Smith brand. Read more

September 24, 2020 

›Rumpl Partners On New Zealand Distribution
Rumpl, the maker of technical blankets, announced a distribution partnership with Compendium Limited, a distributor in the New Zealand and Pacific Island region. Read more

Vail Resorts Q4 Results Negatively Impacted By COVID-19
Vail Resorts, Inc. reported results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended July 31, 2020, which were negatively impacted by COVID-19 and the resulting closure of the company’s North American destination mountain resorts and regional ski areas on March 15, 2020. Fourth-quarter results included approximately one month of operations from its North American summer and Australian winter seasons. Read more

G-III Apparel Adds Board Member
G-III Apparel Group Ltd. announced the election of Robert L. Johnson, founder and chairman of The RLJ Companies, LLC and former founder and chairman of Black Entertainment Television (BET), to the company’s Board of Directors. Read more

Gap Inc. Expands Loyalty Program Across Banners
Gap Inc. said it is launching unique loyalty programs across the U.S. and Puerto Rico across each of its core brands: Navyist Rewards, Gap Good Rewards, Banana Republic Rewards, and Athleta Rewards, replacing its previous loyalty program, BRIGHT Rewards. Customers can earn and redeem rewards across its family of brands. Read more

REI Co-op Achieves 14-Year Carbon Neutrality Commitment, Sets Ambitious New Climate Platform
REI Co-op announced it will complete a 14-year commitment to be carbon neutral in its operations in 2020 and launched an ambitious new climate platform that will see the co-op more than halve its carbon footprint over the next decade – even as the company anticipates future growth in size and revenue. Read more

Boardriders’ Debt Ratings Upgraded By S&P
Boardriders Inc., the parent of Quiksilver, Billabong, Roxy, DC Shoes, RVCA and Element brands,  saw its debt ratings upgraded by S&P Global Ratings as the company recently completed a transaction to provide needed liquidity. The issuer credit rating was raised to ‘CCC’ from ‘SD’, which reflects an updated view of the company’s still distressed credit risk. Read more

Bass Pro Extends Partnership With Toyota
Toyota and partner Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s announce the renewal of a longstanding partnership for an additional five years, which will lead the brands into 20 years of collaboration together. Read more

Canada Goose Earns B1 CFR Debt Rating From Moody’s
Moody’s Investors Service assigned first time ratings to Canada Goose Inc., consisting of a B1 corporate family rating (CFR), B1-PD probability of default rating, a B2 rating to its proposed $300 million senior secured first-lien term loan B due in 2027, and an SGL-1 speculative grade liquidity rating. The outlook is stable. Read more

Crocs Appoints Board Member
Crocs Inc. announced that Charisse Ford Hughes has been appointed to its board of directors effective October 1, 2020. Read More

Puma Appoints General Manager EEMEA Distribution; Head Of Corporate Strategy
Puma appointed Johan Kuhlo, currently head of corporate strategy and investor relations, as general manager EEMEA Distribution with immediate effect. Read more

September 23, 2020

›Adidas Renews Partnership With Huston-Tillotson
Adidas signed a new four-year partnership with Huston-Tillotson in Flower Mound, TX. Read more

Academy Sports And Outdoors Sets IPO Range
Academy Sports and Outdoors late Wednesday set its initial public offering terms, hoping to raise $250 million from the sale of 15.625 million shares between $15 and $17 a share. Read more

Recall: Pedego Electric Bikes
About 11,600 electric bikes from Pedego are being recalled. Read more

AlixPartners Retail Holiday Sales Survey Forecasts One Percent Growth
AlixPartners released its forecast for retail holiday sales in the United States and for the first time included October in its definition of the holiday shopping season arguing that the “official” November/December definition is “meaningless” this year—and perhaps forever—due to COVID-19’s dramatic effects on shopping behaviors and long-bubbling retail trends now accelerated by the pandemic. Read more

Kathmandu’s 2020 Sales Boosted By Rip Curl
Kathmandu Holdings Limited reported group sales were up 48.7 percent in the 12 months ended July 31, boosted by nine-month ownership of Rip Curl. Read more

Patagonia Appoints New CEO
Patagonia appointed Ryan Gellert as CEO of Patagonia Works, the umbrella company for all its ventures. The announcement comes a little over three months after Rose Marcario stepped down from the top spot after 12 years at the company. Read more

Los Alamos County, NM Ranked Healthiest Community, U.S. News & World Report
Los Alamos County in New Mexico topped the 2020 Healthiest Communities Rankings released by U.S. News & World Report and Aetna Foundation. Read more

SportsEngine Forms Partnership With Club Champions League
SportsEngine, Inc., an NBC Sports Group company and provider of sports relationship management software, announced it has formed a partnership with Club Champions League d/b/a National League Alliance, considered one of the largest youth soccer leagues in the United States. Read more

CBP Blocks Shipments Of Products From Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued Withhold Release Orders (WRO) today on products made in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) of China due to concerns over use of forced labor. Read more

Walmart To Hire 20,000 Holiday Warehouse Workers
To prepare for an expected increase in online shopping this holiday season, Walmart will hire more than 20,000 seasonal associates in its e-commerce fulfillment centers across the country. Read more

TOCA Football Confirms $15 Million In New Funding; Appoints Board Members
TOCA Football, Inc., the soccer-focused and technology-enabled experience company has appointed Abby Wambach and Richelle Parham to its Board of Directors. The platform also recently secured $15 million in a new financing facility. Read More

Goat Group Raises $100 Million To Further Accelerate Growth
Goat Group, the online marketplace for sneakerheads, closed a Series E funding round of $100 million from D1 Capital Partners. Founded in 2015 as a sneaker re-seller, the company has expanded into apparel and accessories from select emerging, contemporary brands. Read more

Amazon Launches “Climate Pledge Friendly” Shopping Program
Amazon announced its latest Climate Pledge Friendly shopping program to help customers identify the more than 24,000 products that have met 18 sustainable certifications on its site. Read more

September 22, 2020

Nike’s Q1 Earnings Blow Past Estimates
Nike Inc. reported sales were down 1 percent in the first quarter ended August 31 but topped Wall Street’s targets as digital growth grew 82 percent. Earnings were up 10 percent and far ahead of analyst estimates. Read more

Ortovox Hires Northwest Reps
Ortovox, the specialist in avalanche safety equipment and technical mountain wear, announced a partnership with Elevated Adventures LLC, an agency owned by Joel Anderson, to lead sales efforts in the Northwest. Read more

CODI To Acquire BOA Technology
Compass Diversified (CODI) entered into a definitive agreement to acquire BOA Technology Inc. (BOA), manufacturer of the Boa Fit System for $454 million. The purchase price excludes working capital and certain other adjustments upon closing. Read more

Vail Resorts And PepsiCo Renew + Expand Distribution; Sustainability Initiative
Vail Resorts and PepsiCo announced an expansion of their longstanding partnership, including a significant investment annually in projects that support Commitment to Zero, Vail Resorts’ sustainability pledge. Read more

Asics Supports Tennis Coaching Community With Virtual Academy
Asics EMEA announced the launch of the Asics Tennis Academy, a virtual community platform that gives tennis coaches access to advice and training from industry experts. Read more

Slinger Bag Announces Multi-Year Distribution Agreement With Dunlop Sports
Slinger Bag, the manufacturer of equipment for all ball sports with a focus on the global tennis market, today announced a multi-year, distribution agreement across nine key markets in Europe with the tennis equipment manufacturer, Dunlop Sports. Read more

Footwear Sales Drop In August, Reports NPD
Total footwear U.S. sales for August declined 18 percent year-over-year. The decline was attributed to the end of stimulus checks, virus spikes in parts of the country and delayed back-to-school selling. Read more

Dick’s SG Appoints Two Board Members
Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc. announced it has appointed Sandeep Mathrani, the chief executive officer of WeWork, and Desiree Ralls-Morrison, the senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary at Boston Scientific Corporation, to the company’s board of directors. Read more

›Brixton To Open Store In Encinitas
Brixton, best known for its headwear, plans to open a 1,000 square-foot store in Encinitas, CA in November. Read more

 September 21, 2020

›New Balance Wins Trademark Fight Over ‘New Bunren’ Shoes
New Balance Athletics Inc. won $504,000 in statutory damages from Chinese shoe seller, USA New Bunren International Co.’s, willful trademark infringement according to a ruling in Delaware federal court. Read more

Primary Arms Names Hard-Lines Merchandising Manager And Director Of Merchandising
Primary Arms Online announced the promotion of Matt Okun to hardlines merchandising manager and Aaron Whatley to director of merchandising. Read more

U.S. Golf Equipment Sales For August Up Nearly 32 Percent
Golf Datatech announced that U.S. retail golf equipment sales for August 2020 were up nearly 32 percent over the same period in 2019, exceeding the previous all-time high in August 2006 by 15 percent. Read more

ABC Financial Acquires Trainerize
ABC Financial (ABC), a provider of technology and related services for the fitness industry, has acquired Trainerize, a Vancouver-based mobile fitness solution for personal training and member engagement. Read more

Halo Foods Acquired By Peak Rock Capital
An affiliate of Peak Rock Capital, the middle-market private investment firm, completed its acquisition of Halo Foods Ltd., the maker of the Skinny brand of low-calorie snacks, in partnership with the management team of Halo. Read more

School Specialty Finalizes Recapitalization And Sale Of Business
School Specialty, Inc., a provider of educational products and services from the Pre-K-to-12th grade market in the U.S. and Canada., announced that substantially all its assets have been acquired by SSI Acquisition, LLC, an entity formed by TCW Asset Management Company, LLC, Cerberus Capital Management, and Lantern Capital Partners. Read more

Modell’s Submits Liquidation Plan
Modell’s Sporting Goods Inc. filed its Chapter 11 liquidation plan that calls for unsecured creditors to recover less than one percent of their claims. Read more

Walmart Launches Free Assembly
Walmart announced the launch of a major new casual clothing line for men and women called Free Assembly. Free Assembly was designed by an in-house team led by Dwight Fenton, former chief creative officer at Bonobos with past experience at J. Crew, Vineyard Vines and Old Navy. Read more

Vasa Appoints COO
Vasa Inc., the maker of swim training devices based in Essex Junction, VT, appointed Keith Watson as COO. Watson comes to Vasa after spending 12 years in executive positions at Peaksware Holdings, LLC, (home of as well as 10 years with Intuit, Inc. Read more

Hyperice Appointed UFC’s Recovery Partner
UFC, the mixed martial arts organization, named Hyperice its Official Recovery Technology Partner. Read more

Easton Introduces Bat Trade-In Program
Easton Diamond Sports introduced its first Trade In and Trade Up Program for baseball. With this announcement, players can trade in their used USA, USSSA and BBCOR bats to receive a credit toward the purchase of a new Easton USSSA or BBCOR baseball bat on  Read more

Report: Nike’s Track & Field Chief Steps Down
John Capriotti, director of athletics at Nike, is stepping down after guiding the brand’s track and field sports marketing group since 1992. He will continue to work with Nike as a consultant, according to The Oregonian. Read more

U.S. Senate Unanimously Passes America’s Conservation Enhancement Act
The U.S. Senate on September 16 passed by unanimous consent S. 3051, America’s Conservation Enhancement (ACE) Act. This major package of natural resource management and conservation provisions now moves to the U.S. House of Representatives, where a vote is expected as soon as this week, according to the American Sportfishing Association (ASA).

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Illustration courtesy Lark