Canine Connections: How Outdoor Dog Brand Ruffwear Is Building Relationships Across Europe
Ruffwear’s said venture is, ‘to build performance product to beautify and inspire outside adventures for puppies and their human companions.’ That’s a neat inversion of the conventional take concerning dog partners and a reflection of the emblem’s rather quirky man or woman obvious on its website. Andrew Geere is CEO of the UK-based Accapi Group, the exceptional distributor of American emblem Ruffwear’s products in Europe.
Eavesdropping on a product presentation, he turned into making to stores from Iceland at an exchange display, brought about locating out more approximately what, at first glance, seems a spot product location. According to the European Pet Food Industry Federation, the dog population in Europe stands at round 85 million with 21% of European families proudly owning a canine. The annual price of pet-associated services and products in 2018 stood at around €7 billion, in step with PETS International, and studies with the aid of the Outdoor Recreation Network indicates that 50% of visits exterior are made with dogs.
It turned into the combination of seasonal recommendation from country wide park authorities regarding puppies and farm animals inside the nation-state plus a recent seminar, organised by way of the Outdoor Recreation Network, with the subject matter ‘People & Dogs within the Outdoors’ that become the spur to discover how Accapi became developing enterprise in this evolving out of doors category.
Accapi began working with Ruffwear within the UK most effective in 2010; it now has distribution in 31 international locations and has loved a usual growth price of 17.5% CAGR. Outside the United Kingdom, Germany is its most powerful marketplace with 24.Five% CAGR. I met with Geere to find out more about business in Europe.
Andrew Geere: Our customers enjoy energetic activities, together with hiking, walking, cycling or snowboarding, they care approximately the environment and their canine are very much ‘one of the family.’ They’re inquisitive about tools that help them revel in outside pursuits with their canine with purchases which can be pushed by using great and feature. Plus, they’re keen to share their adventures with their canine accomplice on social media
Traynor: Are there regional variations in the products that shops order?
Geere: Climate and geography have an effect on purchases. Central Europe buys throughout the variety even as the Nordic location tends toward backpacks, harnesses, and boots. Unsurprisingly, in addition to harnesses, Southern Europe is powerful on cooling products. There are also versions on color preference from the marketplace to marketplace.
Traynor: How do help in-shop income?
Geere: We have a launch package deal which includes branded factor-of-sale substances, a remarkable online asset library presenting lifestyle and product pictures, joint investment in advertising interest, social media campaigns (#mydogismy), product education brought inside two weeks of receiving inventory plus an ongoing evaluation of the way the product is operating. Improvement is a new European website to proportion the tale with a much wider target market.
Traynor: How is business in Eastern Europe?
Geere: With many unbiased stores and a large dog population, it represents an actual increase opportunity for us. Although it’s nonetheless early days in the improvement of the ‘pet humanization’ fashion visible in the west, humanization results in ‘premiumization’ that’s incredible for our commercial enterprise.
Traynor: How do out of doors outlets advantage from stocking Ruffwear?
Geere: This is a new product class letting them promote more to existing purchasers and to draw new ones with steady year-spherical sales. Stock is available right away, there’s low preliminary funding needed to begin the class, ahead orders are not needed, and repeat orders are delivered within days in Central Europe. Our ‘Trail Tested Promise’ is an established no-quibble assurance programme – the only factor no longer protected is chewing!
Having heard from one facet of the economic courting, a quick virtual tour round Europe supplied perception into how product for puppies equipped into the outside retail scene. First up changed into Tuija Pellikka, manager of the canine sports activities department at Finland-based Varuste. Internet, who informed me,
Customers can now get quite a lot everything for outside lifestyles from here and additionally for their dogs. From our point of view, it’s far best herbal that we serve outdoor people in this subject. Because, howdy, why on this planet might you go away your canine out of the adventures? People who are into exterior are frequently additionally very satisfactory conscious. You wouldn’t choose a backpack that rubs you, so you want to make certain that also your hairy accomplice walks in secure equipment. It is an issue of functionality and safety. Although looking right on the equal time in no way harmed anybody!”
Retail wise, in our chain, Ruffwear is a brand new line of merchandise. However we see it’s far pretty thrilling and probably essential within the destiny. We are specialised out of doors retailer, and we see a developing interest of puppy owners, who are frequently within the outdoors to percentage their sports with their pets. Regular pet shops could commonly not cross for high-quality merchandise. At least now not as in line with the mountain climbing equipment standards, so it appears we might be the proper region for such products. Also, a thrilling point is normally pet owners who go to the mountains are pretty energetic on social media – so it drives also our typical exposure as a retailer.”