Messe Friedrichshafen will be presenting the first OutDoor INDUSTRY AWARD this year at the European OutDoor trade fair (July 23rd to 26th 2006). Created and organised by iF International Forum Design, the aim of the competition is to promote good design in the outdoor industry. Meeting in Hanover, the judges selected 34 products from 153 entries submitted by companies in 21 countries. Six Silver Awards and one Gold Award were presented to the top-ranking products.

Andreas Bartmann from Globetrotter said, “The competition concept is excellent with a serious and highly professional approach. The jury was well-balanced and different perspectives went into the assessments. Judges included active pioneers, professional product testers, business people and athletes. This award can be a real incentive for manufacturers.”

The submitted products were entered into one of the following categories: clothing, footwear, backpacks/luggage, mountain climbing equipment, camping equipment, sleeping bags, water sports, accessories. Members of the jury included Andreas Bartmann (Globetrotter accessories), Christoph Böninger (designafairs GmbH), Mark Held (EOG European Outdoor Group) Ines Papert (rock/ice climbing specialist), Chris Townsend (tgo Newsquest Magazines) and Frank Wacker (outdoor magazine).

Christoph Böninger from designafairs GmbH said, “The products submitted demonstrate the current level of technological development and offer plenty of good, aesthetic design. At the same time, instead of technology being the main focus, it is used to create added utility value. Outdoor goods are more authentic than other products. It’s much easier to differentiate between real innovations and things that are basically just marketing gimmicks.”

The products were evaluated according to the following criteria: level of innovation, design quality, finish, material selection, environmental compatibility, functionality, serviceability, safety, trend-setting aspects, brand value/branding. The Gold and Silver Award winners will be announced at a ceremony taking place at OutDoor on Sunday, July 23rd, at 9:30 AM in Friedrichshafen. Awards ceremony documentation will be published in German and English.
Comments from the jury

Mark Held, of the European Outdoor Group said, “There are a number of products that feature innovative details and a wealth of progressively developed innovations. This competition gives these new products a platform-that’s great!”