Outdoor Industries Association Blog

Inaugural OIA CEO/ Directors forum kicks off with some punch

Last Wednesday saw the inaugural OIA CEO/ Director Forum, held at the Palace Hotel in Manchester.  Far from being a stuffy affair there was a relaxed yet focused atmosphere as senior figures from within the industry gathered, some meeting for the first time.  The theme was, perhaps unsurprisingly, ‘Government cuts – is it all doom and gloom?  Identifying the opportunities and threats to the industry collectively’.

Tom Franklin kicked off the main part of the evening with his key note presentation, which highlighted some of the main challenges the walking community is now facing.  As debate and discussion around the room ensued, there was consensus that despite the current challenging circumstances for the business community,  opportunities  for organisations operating in our industry outweigh the threats and some core focus points were identified.  That said it was also clear that these will only be realised if we work together, not just within our own membership body but by creating those important alliances with our counterparts across the other sectors.   And having Tom Franklin, CEO of Ramblers, and Andy Robinson, CEO of Institue for Outdoor Learning, there was a good start.

It was even better that we could put something back and raise money for an outdoor charity, Equal Adventure, and make a little difference directly while we were at it.  Thank you to all those attending for their generous donations.

Now we just need to carry that momentum forward and I look forward to reporting on that progress by the next OIA Forum being held during the Innovex Conference on April 12th 2011. You can read the full report on the event in our news section.

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