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Today's news...11/19/04

NOVEMBER 19, 2004 -- Sport Chalet Hires New Independent Auditor

Sport Chalet dismissed Ernst & Young LLP as the company's independent registered public accounting firm. Ernst & Young had served as the independent registered public accounting firm since 1983. The decision to dismiss Ernst & Young was made by the Audit Committee of the board and approved by the full board.

The reports of Ernst & Young on the company's financial statements for each of the past two completed fiscal years contained no adverse opinion or disclaimer of opinion, nor were they qualified or modified as to uncertainty, audit scope, or accounting principles. During the two most recent fiscal years and the subsequent interim period through the date of the dismissal, Sport Chalet had no disagreement with Ernst & Young on any matter of accounting principles or practices, financial statement disclosure, or auditing scope or procedure, which disagreement, if not resolved to the satisfaction of Ernst & Young, would have caused them to make reference to such disagreement in connection with their reports for such periods.

On November 15, the company engaged Moss Adams LLP as its independent auditor for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2005.

OR Winter Show To Initiate Fashion Shows

At the upcoming Winter Market (1/29-2/1) in Salt Lake City, style and performance will be on display at OR's first-ever Winter Market Fashion Show. The stage will be set in the southeast corner of the Salt Palace Ballroom with fashion shows occurring twice daily, at 11 am and 2 pm, with one only on the last day of OR at 11 am. The Winter Market Fashion Show will feature professional models working the runway in next season's hottest Fall/Winter/Holiday apparel, footwear and accessories.

Outdoor Retailer has enlisted Jeffrey Berke Productions and Webb Audio Visual, both based in Salt Lake City, to create and produce the runway-style shows. Samples for the Fashion Show should be sent directly to Jeffrey Berke Productions by December 30, 2004. All OR Winter Market exhibitors are invited to participate in the show, however there is no guarantee that submitted product will be featured. For more information on submitting product for the Winter Market Fashion Show, exhibitors can review/download a Fashion Show submission form on OR's website at: http://www.outdoorretailer.com.

Team Dealers Will Develop Policies For Road Salespersons At Team Dealer Summit

Bob Dickman, president of Kesslers Team Sports, will moderate a first-of-its-kind workshop to help team dealers develop effective policies to manage their road sales teams. This will take place Monday, May 23, at the 7th Annual NSGA Team Dealer Summit to be held May 22-25, at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa in Tucson.

In the roadmen’s policy workshop, working groups will be assigned policies to develop, discuss and refine. The final policies will be compiled and distributed to all in attendance. Immediately following that session, attorney Jim Barber will share information on developing an employee policy manual, with the focus being on non-road employees.

"After the first day of the Summit, team dealers should have a set of policies that can apply to their entire team, both on the road and in the office," said NSGA COB Ron Kruse, president of Hayden's Athletic. "The workshop will allow dealers to fully discuss all aspects of a specific policy and create policies that are clear, easy to follow and easy to enforce."

The second day of the Summit will focus on profitability. The first session features Dick Caravati, president of the DMA Group, Inc., who will cover the topic "Taking Your Team Dealer Business to a New Level of Profitability." He will pack a variety of team-building, goal-achievement, communication and accountability management techniques into a one-hour presentation that concludes with a Q&A session. Caravati will emphasize net profit improvement as he presents the ideas, tools and applications his firm has introduced to dealers and refined over a period of 25 years.

The second session will focus on "Underutilized Sales Opportunities – the Corporate and Reconditioning Markets." Michael Jacobsen, editor of Sporting Goods Dealer, will moderate the panel, which consists of Dave Drill, president of Circle Systems; David Deane, president of Downtown Athletic; and Phil Rosati, VP of Lansing Sporting Goods. These panelists will share strategies and tactics on how to exploit the reconditioning and corporate markets, including turning reconditioning opportunities into additional equipment sales.

UK Sports Show Is Cancelled

It's been years since the UK sports trade has been able to boast of a successful national trade show. Another one has bitten the dust. The joint organizers of the The Sports Trade Show, Datateam Publishing (SGB UK) and The Outdoor Industries Association, have decided that there will be no show next year or in the foreseeable future.

According to SGB UK, "While it was never intended to be a major profit-making venture, STS made a loss this year which led the organizers to believe that continuing to try and re-establish a UK sports trade event was no longer in their interests commercially. The show itself started slowly in 2003, but there were encouraging signs and a positive reaction from many whom attended, whether as a visitors or exhibitors, but this year's event saw a drop in visitor numbers and fewer established exhibitors signing up for the event."

Paul Ryder, publications manager of a number of Datateam titles, including SGBUK, feels that despite encouragement from some sectors of the industry, the support is not there to sustain the show in the long term. He told SGBUK: "When we told people we were planning to bring back a UK sports trade show, we got plenty of verbal support from within the industry. The reality was that that verbal support didn't translate into enough stands being sold to make the event a success. You have to wonder whether such an event can work with the industry as fragmented as it these days and with stockrooms and buying group shows taking place across the country at different times throughout the year. We gave it our best shot, but in the end not enough people were prepared to book stands and not enough retailers turned up to satisfy the exhibitors that were prepared to back us. It's a great shame but we have to accept defeat because while it was never our aim to make huge profits, we also cannot afford to make a loss year after year. I would like tm thank everyone who did back STS either as an exhibitor or as a visitor because I realize that there were still plenty of backers for the show, who were prepared to make that initial leap of faith with us." Source: SGB UK)

Reebok Opening Intersport UK Members

Intersport UK and Reebok have agreed upon a new UK group distribution arrangement. For three years the retail group had not benefited from centralized terms with the third largest sporting brand since the reorganization of the previous Intersport Great Britain.

From 2Q05, members of the group, with over 200 stores nationwide, will benefit from improved trading terms and access to exclusive Reebok models. Reebok who had witnessed the growth and development of Intersport UK, with strong member participation from the best independent sports retailers in the UK and Ireland, felt that a joint agreement would benefit all parties. The Reebok deal virtually completes the Intersport portfolio of major brand involvement. Nike and Adidas already support the group with advantageous trade terms and exckusive product. (Source: SGB UK)

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Copyright 2005 Sporting Goods Business

Quick links: One-click access to topics in this article.

Sporting goods industry
Apparel manufacturing

Ernst & Young s.r.o.
Sport Chalet Inc.
Audit Committee
Moss Adams LLP
Road Salespersons At Team

Team Dealers
Sport Chalet
Independent Auditor
accounting principles
verbal support

Jeffrey Berke
Intersport UK
Webb Audio
Bob Dickman

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