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Trade fairs – there are none and they are new, or how to survive financial turbulence in a kayak.


Every autumn, the kayaking world met at the next edition of the fair in Nuremberg. It was an excellent opportunity to contact people from the event industry, equipment manufacturers, distributors, traders and kayakers. Guests came from all over the world, from Europe, North and South America, Australia, even Asia, Japan and China.

Unfortunately, the situation changed in 2020 and Paddle Expo was canceled. In 2021, the Paddle Sport Show was launched in Lyon, France. New date, new formula. With great anticipation we were preparing to present the company in a new place.

During the event, we presented a new product, the Variant spraydeck, which combines the advantages of a specially profiled neoprene deck with an easy-to-use chimney (tube, belt). It attracted attention just like the other products. The spraydeck was the subject of a short film from the channel link

For our company, from the perspective of 2020 and 2021, the market has changed dramatically. Compared to the previous editions of the fair, we had a larger group of customers who viewed our products, asked more questions about availability, technology, quality, lead times, another group simply placed orders or supplemented the orders with additional products to the orders already placed before the fair. .

The specific economic situation meant that we had more orders for larger quantities of pieces in orders. Disrupted supply chains, huge increases in freight prices, Brexit and the changing position of British companies on the EU market have changed supply sources in Europe. Customers began to look for goods available in Europe with a guaranteed on-time delivery. Most of our clients understood that ongoing price increases related to inflation and the inflated asset bubble on the mass goods market change a lot in our business.

No one will ever define in numbers the scale of changes and % inflation rates or interest rates on the loan market to calculate business costs and margins. Plus the „black swan” effect of an unpredictable event. For us, it was the blockage of the Ever Given ship in the Suez Canal and the suspension of the supply of raw materials from this ship to Europe for many months. Did we know anything more? NO. Maybe we watched BREXIT and allowed markets to isolate. In September 2019, the interbank REPO transaction market saw an unusual change in the rate, then in November there was an inversion of US bonds. Short-term bonds gave better returns than long-term bonds. This gave rise to the presumption of changes in finances (see the 2008 crisis).

Our recipe for 2019, 2020, 2021 was to purchase as many raw materials as possible for production and to have an appropriate cash flow policy to continue production without downtime. We have strengthened the machinery in the sewing and printing plants and invested in modern software tools so that the slogan „lean manufacturing” brings the expected effect. YES, in an interview for Paddle Sports Show web TV link, we called ourselves the Chinese of Europe. Looking at the added value that the production of products brings, we can proudly say that we reap the rewards of many years of hard work of planning, implementing, correcting, improving, and simple everyday production.

2021 was a record year for us in terms of the number of goods manufactured, orders, the number of B2B customers and customers who had been watching us during the Nuremberg fair for many years and now cooperated in Lyon by placing orders.

Finally, one photo instead of a thousand words. This is a meeting with our French dealer Idoine Diffusion, Mr. Emannuel Delager

Instead of talking in Lyon about price increases, inflation, freight, delivery times, lack of UK companies at the fair, product issues, market positioning against competitors, we had a friendly conversation about families, everyday life and ended with handing over our artisan chocolates to MANU three favorite flavors. The joy of the meeting and the friendly atmosphere are the best omens for the coming time. Whatever happens in the economy in 2022, 2023, we know that our teams have a synergy that will turn intentions into realized goals.

And the Idoine Diffusion logistics team is so happy with the additional sweet gifts 😉

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