Intersport’s sales declined by 8 percent to just over €3 billion during the financial year ended last Sept. 30 in the five countries steered by the Intersport Deutschland retail cooperative: Germany, Austria, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Double-digit declines in April and May, when stores were closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, were followed what the company describes as a “sports boom” in the summer.

In the German market, which accounts for around 80 percent of the total turnover in the five countries, sales declined by 8 percent. With a share of 17 percent, sales in Austria were off by 7 percent. The other three countries suffered altogether a drop of 11 percent.

Going through the different product categories, the retail organization mentioned increases of 4 percent in Running, 48 percent in Bike and 18 percent in Funwheels. In contrast, Training and Team Sports recorded declines of 9 percent and 17 percent, respectively. Without mentioning a figure, Intersport said the winter sports business was significantly impacted by a mild winter and the coronavirus crisis.

The deployment of Intersport Germany’s own internet platform helped mitigate the impact of the pandemic on some of the retail members’ sales. A total of 300 retailers with 450 shops are currently linked to the system.

While boosting the digitalization process, Intersport Germany sought to establish faster and speedier logistic processes with the start-up of a new, automated central warehouse in Heilbronn. One of its functions during the current retail lockdown in Germany, which has been extended until March 7, is to deliver packages directly to customers that have been ordered by them online for products that cannot be delivered by the retail members who received the orders.