Summary of our market study

The global equine industry, estimated to be worth almost $300 billion in 2020, was faced with major fluctuations due to the Covid-19 pandemic, leading to a slowdown in 2020, with equine-related sectors registering significant losses - 45-80% for equestrian establishments and 50-80% for trotter trainers in March and April compared with the previous year.this led to a slowdown in 2020, with equine-related sectors recording significant losses - 45-80% for equestrian establishments and 50-80% for trotter trainers in March and April compared with the previous year. Despite these challenges, the French equestrian market enjoyed a post-pandemic upswing, with the number of members of the Fédération Française d'Equits of the Fédération Française d'Équitation (FFE) rose by 15%, from 601,200 in 2020 to 665,900 in 2021.

Equestrian centers have shown stability, with a negligible CAGR of 0.03%, totaling 9,505 registered centers by 2021. The industry's recovery and optimistic outlook are reinforced by technological innovations propelled by entities such as the Hippolia competitiveness cluster and the emergence of equestrian startups.

Fluctuating trends and demand prospects in the equine industry

In recent times, the equine industry, particularly in the field of riding and associated sectors such as equestrian equipment, has experienced a dynamic flow in terms of demand and market trends. Horse-riding occupies a prominent place as a sport, particularly in France, which ranks third among sports federations. With a majority of female members, the equestrian federation is a beacon for women's participation in sport. Riding schools and equestrian equipment represent the core of the equestrian market, which is strongly influenced by socio-economic factors.

It's interesting to note that the global market for equine industries is soaring around US$275-325 billion, with the equestrian equipment market expected to grow from US$11-17 billion by 2027. In France, instability has marked the size of the riding school market, with notable influences from VAT rate adjustments introduced by the European Commission.

The number of members of the Fédération française d'équitation (FFE), a telling indicator of market demand, saw a decline of around 15% between 2012 and 2020. Looking at the demographics, enthusiasts are predominantly in the riding segment, at over 80%, and women make up 85% of associate members. In addition, children and young adults, especially those aged 9 to 14, make a significant contribution to the equestrian sector.

Looking at the market from a geographical perspective, regions such as Île-de-France and Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes boast high concentrations of equestrian enthusiasts, reflecting regional preferences and infrastructural support.

Nevertheless, the market has remained stable when viewed from the perspective of riding school growth. Although the advent of Covid-19 had a deleterious impact on the industry, with some sectors recording up to 80% loss of sales, a trend towards revitalization was observed after the pandemic, attributable to a growing appeal for outdoor activities and a commitment to nature.

The equestrian market is diversifying with an influx of new small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), diluting the dominance of traditional key players. Equestrian centers and suppliers, iconic riding schools such as Club.

Key entities in the equestrian market: a look at major players and innovative start-ups

The French equestrian market is a dynamic environment teeming with diverse players, from traditional equestrian centers to innovative start-ups that are redefining the landscape thanks to modern technologies. Each of these entities plays an essential role in maintaining the vitality of the market and meeting the changing needs of equestrian enthusiasts.

  • Riding schools: serving tradition and passion

At the heart of the French market are equestrian centers such as Club Hippique de Neubourg and Ecuries de Saint Cyr, which represent the timeless tradition of equestrianism. These centers offer comprehensive riding programs and facilities for beginners and experienced riders alike, ensuring that equestrian sports continue to be enjoyed and practiced in local communities.

  • Retail centers: bridging the gap between accessibility and choice

On the retail side, entities such as Decathlon have made significant strides as retailers of sportswear and equipment not strictly dedicated to equestrian sports. They distinguish themselves by offering an accessible range of equestrian products, enabling both occasional and professional riders to find equipment at affordable prices. On the other hand, specialists like PADD focus directly on equestrian needs, presenting enthusiasts with a wide range of equipment and clothing dedicated to riding, thus carving out a place for themselves in the B2C segment.

  • Distribution specialists: the link between products and markets

National distributors like Ekkia play an essential role in the B2B segment. Their extensive catalogs and efficient distribution networks ensure that riding schools and specialist stores are constantly supplied with high-quality equipment. International wholesalers such as Horze and Waldhausen further extend market reach by distributing a wide selection of equestrian products on a global scale, promoting a wide range of choice for consumers worldwide.

  • Technological innovators: revolutionizing the equestrian experience

Among these pillars are emerging stars - innovative start-ups that integrate technology into the equestrian experience. For example, Proximal is a beacon of innovation with its use of LED technology designed to improve visibility conditions in equestrian centers. These pioneering companies harness the power of technology to improve safety, performance and the overall experience of equestrian riders and athletes.

In short, the French equestrian market is as diverse as it is specialized, fostering a rich ecosystem where tradition meets innovation. These players, with their different interests and specialties, together form the solid backbone of this beloved industry.

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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and scope of the study

Today, horse riding is one of the most widespread sporting activities, not only in France but in many other countries around the world.

In France in particular, horseback riding is a highly reputed equestrian sport. It is the 3rd largest sporting federation, with 692,400 members of the Fédération Française d'Équitation (FFE) in 2022, 85% of whom will be women, making it also the 1st women's federation. In 2021, this market will employ over 17,000 people through more than 9,500 structures dedicated to horse riding. [IFCE]

Every year, new SMEs appear on the market for solutions and equipment dedicated to the practice of this sport. In the Horse Directory 2019, there are over 20,000 French and foreign companies selling their products and services in France. We are thus witnessing a diversification of the offer and market players, gradually diluting the concentration of the big historical players. [IFCE]

This study focuses on two segments associated with horse riding:

  • The riding schools market
  • The equestrian equipment market

1.2 Global market

The equine industry encompasses horses, ponies and donkeys. It can be described in terms of four segments whose production, transformation, development, trade and utilization processes are diverse but not independent: racing, sport-leisure, work and meat . It therefore encompasses numerous sectors, such as riding schools and equestrian equipment.

The global market for ...

1.3 French riding market

Thanks to information provided by the Institut Français du Cheval et de l'Equitation (***), it is possible to analyze changes in the size of the equestrian center market in France. It can be seen that the evolution of this market has been very irregular between **** and ****, with an initial trend towards ...

1.4 Covid's impact on the equestrian market

The many restrictions put in place by the government to combat the Covid-** pandemic have had a very negative impact on the equine industry. Indeed, due to the confinements and closures of equestrian centers, all sectors of the equine industry saw a drop in sales in ****. This decline was particularly significant ...

2 Demand analysis

2.1 Growth in the number of horse riders

In order to practice horse riding in an equestrian center, you need to be a member of the Fédération Française d'Equitation (***). The evolution of the number of FFE members is therefore an important determinant in analyzing demand for riding schools.

The graph below shows that this number has ...

2.2 Rider profile

We saw in section *.* the importance of FFE licensees in analyzing the horse-riding market. It is therefore interesting to analyze the profile of these licensees in order to better understand the determinants of demand in the horse-riding sector.

First of all, the graph below shows the distribution of the different licenses ...

2.3 Geographical breakdown of demand

With the same aim of better understanding the determinants of market demand for horse riding in France, it is interesting to analyze the geographical distribution of FFE licensees. Île-de-France predominates, with **,*** members, followed byAuvergne-Rhône-Alpes with **,***, Nouvelle-Aquitaine with **, *** and Hauts de France with **,***.

Geographical distribution of license holders

Source: ****

3 Market structure

3.1 Growth in the number of riding schools

The graph below shows the trend in the number of riding stables between **** and ****. This number has remained relatively stable, with a CAGR of *.**% over this period, rising from *,*** establishments in **** to *,*** registered centers in ****.

Number of riding stables France, ****-****, in number of centers Source: ****

It is also interesting to ...

3.2 Geographical distribution of riding stables

As far as the geographical distribution of riding schools in France is concerned, they tend to be concentrated in the southern regions of the country: *,*** registered in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, *,*** in Nouvelle-Aquitaine and *,*** in Occitanie. Île-de-France is in fourth place, with *** equestrian centers registered in ****.

Geographical Distribution of Equestrian Centers

Source: ****

3.3 Riding market players

given the variety of sectors encompassed by the equine industry and, consequently, the scope selected for this study (***), as shown in the table below:

Source: ****

It's interesting to note that teaching and pensions are the main revenues for riding schools. In fact, they account for **-**% and **-**% of these establishments' ...

4 Offer analysis

4.1 Prices for riding centers and equipment

Riding schools

Riding center prices vary according to the type of customer, the type of course and the region concerned. In fact, to get an estimate of prices in the Paris region, you'd need to add around **% to the values shown in the table below. In fact, this table shows the ...

4.2 Activities offered by riding schools

There is a wide variety of activities recognized by the FFE and offered by equestrian centers and clubs. Most riding schools and clubs offer riders the opportunity to train in one or more of these activities, and then take part in the competition associated with the discipline in question.

The main ...

4.3 Riding market supply trends

As in many other sectors, technology has also reached the equestrian market.

To illustrate the innovations present in this market, we can use the example of Hippolia, the only competitiveness cluster dedicated to the equine brings together and supports project leaders, startups, VSEs, SMEs, ETIs and major groups, as ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Riding regulations

In this section, we look at both the regulations governing equestrian establishments and those governing the professionals associated with these centers.

Regulations governing riding schools:

Equestrian establishments are subject to the rules governing Public Reception Establishments (***).

These rules are set out below and detailed in the links above:

Good repute, Emergency ...

6 Positioning the players

6.1 Segmentation

  • Française d'organisation de matériel équestre (PADD)
  • Club hippique de Neubourg
  • Les Ecuries de Saint Syr
  • Proximal
  • Ekkia
  • Horze
  • Waldhausen
  • Voltaire Groupe
  • General au service du cheval
  • Harcour
  • Akemis
  • Antarès Sellier
  • Azhary
  • CWD Sellier - Lim France
  • Devoucoux Sellier - Lim France
  • Dyon
  • Equidees
  • Equistro (Vetoquignol)
  • Fouganza (Decathlon)
  • Kramer Équitation
  • La Boite à Tapis
  • Tacante
  • Eiffel Jumping
  • Cheval Liberté - Nancy Cheval
  • Samschield
  • Privilège Equitation

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Trends in the size of the equestrian equipment market
  • Market size trends for riding schools
  • Growth in the number of FFE members
  • Breakdown of FFE members (practising), by gender
  • Breakdown of FFE members (practising), by age
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Latest news

Antarès takes on the German market - 05/01/2024
  • Antarès Sellier was founded in 2000.
  • The company has 180 employees.
  • Sales total 22 million euros.
  • Antarès Sellier exports 65% of its products, half to the United States and Canada.
  • Antarès Sellier produces 4,200 custom-made saddles a year.
  • It has had its own bow maker since acquiring a company in Argentina in 2015.
  • Antarès Sellier also manufactures bridles, girths and reins, and 6,500 riding helmets.
  • 80% of premium saddles sold worldwide are French.
  • The German equestrian market is three times larger than that of France.
  • Antarès Sellier plans to expand into Switzerland and Belgium in 2024 or 2025.
  • The saddler also manufactures more affordable half-measure and ready-to-wear saddles under sister brands (Altaïr, Signature, Spooner, Skylla...).
Harcour arrives in Lille - 05/05/2023
  • The famous Harcour brand develops its first boutique away from horse clubs in Lille.
  • Brand created in 2014
  • Harcour present in Le Touquet, Deauville, La Baule, at their racecourses, horse-riding clubs and beaches

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

Française d'organisation de matériel équestre (PADD)
Club hippique de Neubourg
Les Ecuries de Saint Syr
Voltaire Groupe
General au service du cheval
Antarès Sellier

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