The total value of the U.S. tennis economy grew by just over 3% last year, up to $5.57 billion. The data stems from the Tennis Industry Association's annual "Economic Index," created to evaluate the total worth of the U.S. tennis industry to the overall economy. The 2012 index value measured 101, meaning the industry is in a slightly better position than it was in 2008 when the first Economic Index value was released.
Every two years the Tennis Industry Association releases its Cost of Doing Business Study for Tennis Retailers, providing this segment with key performance indicator benchmarks and other industry averages. Retailers who utilize the report have the opportunity to see where they are performing well against the rest of the retail landscape, as well as identify areas in which they may be able to improve their operations. This year's report is slated for an early March release and will available to Associate TIA Members and above.
The Tennis Industry Association is planning a spring release of the third edition of its State of the Industry report, which has been designed to “help narrate the story of the tennis industry,” says TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer.
The State of the Industry synthesizes data from the past year that the TIA collects through its nearly 80 surveys and research studies into an easy-to-read report. “The State of the Industry report takes a top-level view of a variety of trends and segments in the industry to tell a comprehensive “story” of the tennis industry ,” de Boer says.
As the tennis industry's focus on growing youth tenniscontinues to expand across all segments, key performance indicators for the youth initiative show positive signs of growth. The USTA produces a monthly 10 and Under Tennis "Dashboard" that helps track key performance indicators, such as red, orange and green ball sales (tracked by TIA Census Reports), new youth-sized courts installed, and more. For 2012, many of the categories greatly exceeded 2012 goals.
The tennis industry rebounded from a challenging year in 2011 with positive dollar growth in all equipment categories measured by the TIA in 2012, which includes tennis racquets, tennis strings, and tennis balls - which include breakout categories for championship as well as red, orange, and green (ROG) tennis balls.
Tennis dealers are optimistic about the year ahead amid a challenging and evolving marketplace, according to the "Dealer Trends Report," which was recently released by the TIA to its participating partner membership. Tennis dealers have also seen a spike in consumer interest of youth tennis equipment in the past year. This annual report serves as a barometer of dealer confidence in the industry as well as a "report card" for brands carried by the various tennis dealers across the country. The report also highlights key current issues, such as competition from online-only retailers, facing the tennis specialty retail market.
Tennis participation in the U.S. grew 4% in 2012, topping 28 million players for the first time since 2009, according to an annual survey by the U.S. Tennis Association and Tennis Industry Association. It's the second highest total number of players recorded since the survey began in 1988.
According to the latest data from the TIA Specialty Store Tennis Racquet Retail Audit, specialty stores experienced a 4% decline in unit sales of tennis racquets in Q3 of 2012 over 2011 and a 5% decline in dollar sales. Despite the somewhat sluggish performance in the specialty market for the third quarter, year-to-date unit sales are up 3% and dollar sales are up 1%, driven by the strong double digit growth seen in Q1 and solid single digit growth experienced in Q2.
TennisIndustry.org, the central information source for the tennis trade, has recently been redesigned and is set to launch in mid- to late-November. The new website not only focuses on providing specified content for the various segments of the industry, but it also consolidates much of the information that previously resided on ancillary sites hosted by the TIA—making TennisIndustry.org a true "one-stop shop" for industry information.
The tennis industry will be heading into the holiday shopping season on the heels of a strong third quarter compared to 2011. For the first time this year, TIA Wholesale Shipment Census Reports indicate positive growth in all categories measured. In addition, the dollar value of units shipped in each of these categories grew in Q3 2012 compared to Q3 2011.