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Wool Stocktake : AWI Annual Report 2015-16
AWI has continued this year to work with adidas, one of the world’s leading sports brands. Pictured is Lindsey Calla of the ‘Calla in Motion’ blog wearing an adidas Merino wool t-shirt in the Californian desert. PHOTO: Marianna Massey. Sports & Outdoor • AWI continued to promote wool’s presence in the sports and outdoor market, collaborating with leading apparel manufacturers and brands. At recent sports and outdoor trade shows attended by AWI, including ISPO in Munich and Outdoor Retailer in Salt Lake City, the number of products incorporating Merino wool across a variety of sports of varying intensity levels continued to increase. • A majority of the world’s leading outdoor brands now incorporate Merino wool innovations in their collections – and brands’ designers and developers have continually sought AWI’s advice and assistance in incorporating or extending their product ranges with Merino wool. Educational and training sessions were held by AWI with multiple brands and retailers in Europe and the US. • Technological innovations and Australian Merino wool’s natural performance benefits are helping cement the fibre’s presence in the markets for base-layer, mid-layer and outer-layer apparel. As well as continuing to promote the uptake of Merino wool for next-to-skin apparel, AWI has also placed a large focus on wool outerwear: o The innovative MerinoPerformTM WP woven fabric is generating large interest – this 100 per cent Australian Merino wool fabric is a unique, high-performance machine-washable fabric resistant to wind and rain. o Wool wadding is also gaining momentum and is being introduced by new brands each season. • Merino wool’s ability to combine comfort and flexibility with casual elegance is also making it well placed to cater to the growing market for athleisure – a term used for activewear that can be used for non-active and casual, everyday use – with a modern, comfy and stylish look. • In response to industry demand and to complement the success of The Wool Lab – AWI’s seasonal sourcing guide to the world’s best commercially available wool fabrics and yarns – AWI unveiled a new guide completely dedicated to sport, emphasising wool’s unique technical performance benefits for this market. The Wool Lab Sport helps designers source performance fabrics and yarns from the top manufacturers across the world. It has been very well received by sports brands and retailers as well as fabric manufacturers, with lots of new connections and sourcing supply chains developed. • AWI has continued to work with adidas, one of the world’s leading sports brands, which prides itself on technical innovation. adidas continues to promote its range of innovative knitted seamless wool-blend T-shirts, but wool is not just an apparel story for adidas: the company has launched a wool version of its widely heralded Ultra Boost running shoe, with a fully knit and engineered upper, which adidas said delivered your ‘greatest run ever’ and magazine after magazine agreed. • A collaboration between AWI and iconic Italian brand ‘Australian’ – the oldest sports brand in the Italian market – went public during the Italian Open tennis tournament in Rome during May with the launch of the world’s first pure Merino wool tennis collection. It comprises polo shirts, T-shirts and shorts. • Leading German mountaineering/ski brand Ortovox displayed a comprehensive wool education section at the ISPO trade show, showcasing the wool fibre’s journey from Australia to retail in Europe and the US. This follows the company’s visit to Australia last year, when Ortovox brought all its wool suppliers to help facilitate sourcing of 100% Australian Merino wool. • The famous Schuster sports brand and store in Munich, Germany, held a four-week consumer campaign promoting wool in outdoorwear. The campaign included educational displays, window and in-store exhibits, and point of sale material. There was a significant increase in turnover during the campaign period. • UK sportswear brand Ashmei launched a range of Merino wool cycling apparel to complement its successful Merino wool running apparel range. There is a growing 'athleisure' market. Pictured is an image from the HBFIT blog (www.hbfit.com) post: 'Everyday luxury with Merino wool activewear'. REPORT OF 2015/16 OPERATIONS – MARKETING 43
AWI Annual Report 2014-15
AWI Annual Report 2016-17