City Express Tsunami Eats into Sports Goods Sale

Tsunami eats into sports goods sale

Sports goods sale, which was adversely affected by the killer waves of tsunami a few months back, is yet to recover from the shock, say leading sports goods sellers in the city. ‘Tsunami’ , which struck the coast in the middle of the Christmas holidays, brought the sales to a complete halt immediately, said Chandra kumar Chopda, the president of Sports Goods Dealers Association of Tamil Nadu.

“For one week, nobody came this side at all. Even our staff were afraid to come to the shop. Though the ‘tsunami’ scare is over the sales have not yet picked up,” said Chopda who is a partner of ‘The Pavilion,’ at Wallajah road, one of the leading sports goods sellers in the city.

According to Chopda, ‘tsunami’ affected all kinds of beachside sports and naturally this got reflected in the sales.

Rahman, a representatives of Cosco, one of the sports goods manufacturers, agrees with Chopda and adds, “Tsunami has affected the sales of all sports goods. The sports goods sales in the city is very much related to the sporting activities on the beach. There were stretches of volleyball nets on the beach earlier. But after the killer waves, there are only a few now.”

It took more than two months to get the sales up to 35 percent of the season’s sale, he said.

There was an emotional factor also, which led to the dip in sale of sports goods. As the ‘tsunami’ affected the coasts of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh mostly, the beachside sports vanished immediately. Later, when the India-Pakistan cricket series stared, the sellers had some hope to get back to business. But India’s loss in the series was a setback to those expectations too.

There are three major seasons for sports goods during which the sellers get maximum sales. The first is between Christmas and Pongal. That entire season was washed away by ‘tsunami’ waves, which hit on the very first day of the season.

Second season falls in the months of February and March. Educational institutions like schools and colleges buy sports goods in large quantity in this season to conduct college sports days and to utilize their budgetary allocations. This year, most of these institutions had their celebrations in a simple manner to show their sympathy to the victims of the disaster. It also affected the sale of items like trophies, shields and other sports goods.

The third season is the summer vacation. Though the vacation is halfway through, sale is yet to gather momentum. “Still, we are finding it difficult to get the expected sales and now the sales are around 30 per cent less than that in the last season, “ says Chopda.

Morning and evening walkers on the beach were the other customers for these sellers. They used to buy track-suits, shoes and fitness equipment. After ‘tsunami’ , many of them stopped the habit and headed for other fitness options. This also told on the sale of such goods, “Morning walk through the beach was my fitness exercise for years. But after ‘tsunami’, I stopped it and joined a gymnasium, where I do my walking exercises on a treadmill,” says Md.Ubaidur, a resident of Ellis Road.

Tsunami as a brand

Though tsunami has affected the sales of sports goods in Chennai, Hunts County, a leading cricket accessories manufacturer in the world has named some of its products after tsunami. While Hunts County introduced a series of tsunami cricket bats namely County Tsunami Custom Classic, County Tsunami 5*RTP and County Tsunami Junior RTP, they named their new leg pads as Hunts County Tsunami Adult Cricket Batting Leg Guards. The bats cost between £70 and £125. The pads are priced around $100.