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Despite Q3 Decline, Specialty Store Racquet Sales are Up 3% Year-to-Date

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.

TIA Set to Launch New and Improved Website

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.

Cardio Tennis Continues to Grow 'Down Under'

According to a recent consumer research study commissioned by Tennis Australia that focuses on its effort to grow participation in the country via Cardio Tennis, the program has "clearly succeeded in its launch objectives." The study, which was conducted by First Point Research and Consulting on behalf of Tennis Australia, was aimed at understanding how "the program [Cardio Tennis] has delivered against the expectations of participants and the broader target." In 2012, Tennis Australia launched the Cardio Tennis program at the Australian Open as a part of its efforts to grow participation in the game throughout the country.

Mid-Year Shipment Results Up Compared to 2011

The first half of 2012 started off on a positive note for the tennis industry in terms of wholesale shipments of racquets and balls, as well as retail sales for tennis racquets. While much of the success for the first half of the year was driven by a strong  first quarter, the second quarter was defined by a lingering cautious optimism among tennis players and their buying habits.

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