Summary of our market study

The global sporting goods market has grown strongly since 2020, despite the setbacks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020 alone, the economic weight of sport in France exceeded 90 billion euros. The French sporting goods retail market continued to prosper, reaching around 13.8 billion euros in 2022.

Demand for sporting goods was stimulated by the increase in sporting activity, with France recording a rise in the number of people practising sport at least once a week, as well as by the focus on health and well-being as key motivations. Digitization and innovation, as well as the cyclical effect of sporting events, have helped to develop new market segments and boost sales.

Large companies, such as Decathlon and Intersport, dominate the sector, with Decathlon's worldwide sales reaching 15.4 billion euros by 2022. The market has faced the challenges of counterfeiting, resulting in significant sales losses, but the industry has adapted by offering a variety of products and prices to cater for different consumer segments. Seasonality also affects demand, with peaks in August and December. The COVID-19 crisis has resulted in an estimated loss of over 3 billion euros for the sports sector in 2020, but has also paved the way for post-pandemic growth due to increased interest in sport for health reasons.

changing dynamics and drivers of the French sporting goods market

In today's French market, the sporting goods sector has shown resilience and growth, benefiting from a variety of factors driving demand. As the population increasingly engages in sporting activities for health, beauty or leisure reasons, the need for sporting goods, including clothing, equipment and machinery, has increased. In particular, a significant proportion of French people, especially in the 18-34 age bracket, spent an average of between 200 and 250 euros a year on sporting goods and services. The market, once dominated by small, family-run businesses, has been transformed, with large companies such as Decathlon, Intersport and Go Sport claiming considerable distribution shares.

This evolution has been facilitated by technological advances and globalization, with the emergence of start-ups also bringing new energy to this high-potential market. Despite challenges such as inflation, the sector has recorded a 9% increase in 2022, with a positive trajectory forecast, partly attributed to global sporting events such as the Rugby World Cup and the upcoming Paris Olympics in 2024. According to a Deloitte study, running is the favorite sport of the French, who devote an average of 5-6 hours a week to it, with nearly 70% participation. This craze has fuelled sales of sporting goods in specialist stores, with data showing steady growth after a slight dip during the health crisis. In a broader European context, sporting activities in France are less oriented towards online purchases, with over three-quarters of transactions taking place in-store.

However, the sporting goods sector also faces problems such as counterfeiting, which has a significant impact on the French market, accounting for around 6% of annual sales. This illegal activity not only represents a loss of revenue for companies, but also poses health risks for consumers due to potentially toxic counterfeit products. This dynamic market is poised for continued growth, thanks in particular to the motivation to adopt a healthier, more active lifestyle, the growing interest in outdoor sporting activities, and the growing popularity of the sport.t in outdoor sporting activities and the cyclical effect of major sporting events, which stimulate both interest in and sales of sporting goods.

Key players in the sporting goods retail market

As the sporting goods market continues to flourish, several key players have carved out a prestigious place for themselves in this competitive arena. Among a multitude of companies, some stand out for their broad reach, strategic innovation and tailor-made offerings that resonate with casual shoppers and sports enthusiasts alike.

  • Decathlon: A world leader in France

France's Decathlon has earned its stripes as the world's leading sporting goods retailer. With the aim of making sport accessible to all, the company has successfully navigated international waters, planting its flags in countries such as China, Spain, Italy and Russia. Renowned for its wide range of products, Decathlon caters for a broad spectrum of sports and is often recognized for the value it brings through its in-house brands.

  • Intersport: The multi-sports retail giant

Intersport, another multi-sports retail giant, rivals Decathlon's breadth of offer. Although it began as a consortium of small independent retailers, Intersport has evolved into an entity known for its assortment of major brands and its commitment to encouraging people to integrate sport into their daily lives. The company continues to be a benchmark for consumers seeking diversity in their choice of sporting goods.

  • Go Sport: emerging from challenges

Go Sport has been under pressure from an ever-changing market, but remains one of France's leading players in the sporting goods sector. Despite recent difficulties that led to receivership, the brand continues to be recognized for its wide variety of sports products, including athletic wear and fitness equipment.

  • Adidas - A global icon of fashion and performance

More than just sporting goods, Adidas is a giant whose roots in performance equipment have extended to fashion the world over. Its range of sports equipment, athletic footwear and apparel conveys not only an image of athletic prowess, but also a sense of style sought after by many.

  • Nike - The innovator with a Swoosh

Nike's reputation as a leader in innovation and marketing has propelled it to the top of the industry. With a wide range of products from coveted sneaker collections to high-performance sportswear, Nike is synonymous with athleticism and trendy urban living.

  • Puma - Speed and style combined

Puma has made great strides in the market by fusing the fast-paced world of sport with the cutting edge of fashion. It continues to make its presence felt through partnerships with leading athletes and personalities, showcasing a brand that has proven its worth the world over

Get all the information you need
to understand this market

Detailed content of our market study


  • Number of pages : ~ 40 pages
  • Format : Digital and PDF versions
  • Last update : 17/04/2023
Update Details

Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Market definition

A sports article can be defined as any equipment used to practice a sport. It can be clothing (shoes, jerseys, etc.), equipment (tennis rackets, footballs, handballs, etc.) or even machines, such as those used for weight training (rowing machines or treadmills, for example). Talking about the market involves two aspects: manufacturing and distribution.

It's important to distinguish between sporting goods and sports equipment, the latter referring to fittings or constructions that enable the practice of one or more sports.

Nevertheless, sportswear, a type of clothing designed in the United States, can be considered sporting goods, although it is more a clothing trend than a genuine item developed for the practice of sport. This study will therefore focus as much on sportswear as on sportswear.

In a market that was once made up of small, family-run businesses, the last few decades have changed the established order once and for all. Production is no longer the same, transformed by technological innovation and globalization; and large companies, such as Decathlon and Intersport, account for a large share of sporting goods distribution. added to this are a growing number of start-ups trying to make their mark in a high-potential market.

In 2022, the market grew by 9%, driven in particular by government measures to encourage the practice of sport (such as the Pass'Sport) and rising prices. In 2023, the market will also benefit from the organization of global sporting events (Rugby World Cup, Olympic Games in Paris in 2024) and should also see positive growth.

So, two years after the health crisis, the sporting goods retail sector is doing very well overall, even if some players are struggling in the inflationary context. This is the case of Go Sport, one of the major players in the French market, whose profitability has fallen considerably in recent years, and which, in receivership, was awaiting a buyer. On April 28, 2023, the Grenoble Commercial Court validated the plan to sell the assets and activities of the Go Sport Group to Intersport France.

1.2 A fast-growing global market

The sporting goods retail market is highly dynamic worldwide. The market size was $***.* billion in ****, and is expected to grow at a CAGR (***) of *.*% to reach $*** billion by ****. [***]

North America was the largest contributor to the global sports equipment and apparel market with $***,*** million in ****. Key industry players in the sporting ...

1.3 Domestic market

In ****, the economic weight of sport in France exceeded ** billion euros, of which **.* billion corresponded to the total budget of sports associations and **.* billion to the sales of sports companies. In total, the sports industry employs ***,*** people in companies and over *** people in sports associations. [***]

Thanks to data provided by Insee, ...

1.4 Market specifics

A distribution market controlled by generalists

One of the particularities of the sporting goods retail sector is the importance of a few major chains. Decathlon, Intersport, Go Sport and Sport **** have succeeded in establishing themselves throughout the country, totalling thousands of specialist sports stores. Smaller, non-specialized stores are facing difficulties and ...

1.5 The impact of Covid-19 on the market

During the Covid-** health crisis, containment and curfew measures interrupted not only the organization of sporting competitions and championships, but also the recreational practice of sport, thus freezing much of the sport's economic activity.

It is estimated that the loss of sales caused by the Covid-** crisis in **** will amount to ...

2 Demand analysis

2.1 Sport in France: structural and cyclical demand

Growth in sporting activity in France

Today's changing lifestyles (***).

Sporting activities practiced by the French France, ****, in Source: ****

Frequency of sporting activities France, ****, in Source: ****

In France, a **** Deloitte study reveals that the favorite sport of the French is running, favored by **.*% of respondents. **.*% of French people take part in sport, ...

2.2 New audiences, new practices and innovations

New practices: running and outdoor activities

In ****, there were *.* million runners inFrance, an increase of one million in three years (***).

This trend is accompanied by an increase in outdoor sporting activities. This means that athletes are no longer burdened with large machines, and that sport is becoming "simpler": a pair of ...

2.3 Motivations for practising sport

A major factor in the growth of the sporting goods market is the development of sporting activities in general. While some sport is practised purely for leisure, others are motivated by a growing awareness or even a trend towards sport for health or aesthetic reasons. In January ****, a survey by Odoxa ...

2.4 Household purchasing behaviour

In ****, French households spent an average of nearly *** euros on sporting goods and *** euros on sports services (***) sccording to the Conseil d'État report on sports policy. Household spending on sport is rising steadily: in ****, it stood at just ** billion euros.

A study by the Toluna institute shows that a third ...

2.5 Web analysis of demand

Google trends :

Thanks to Google Trends, we can compare the intensity of searches for "sports stores" in all French departments. Haute-Corse, Savoie and even Ardèche top the list.

2.6 France's favorite brands

The graph below is based on OpinionWay's survey of French consumers' favorite brands in March ****. For each brand, the percentage corresponds to the proportion of respondents who answered "yes".

Décathlon is France's favorite sporting goods retailer, with **.*% of respondents saying they like it. Go Sport is the survey's least favorite ...

3 Market structure

3.1 Industry forces and organization

The value chain in the French sporting goods market can be broken down into two main categories: manufacturers and distributors. However, as the Union sport & cycleit is possible to be even more precise. In fact, the association identifies * main types of manufacturer (***):

new entrants: positioned in emerging market segments (***); specialized manufacturers: ...

3.2 A multi-stage production process

The production process depends on the product. However, the preliminary stage is always the same: analysis of athletes' needs. Next comes product design. Designers and engineers, more or less numerous depending on the technical nature of the product, work together to design the product so that it meets the specifications.

Then ...

3.3 Distribution is carried out by brands that are more or less involved in manufacturing

According to the PIPAME report, we can distinguish * types of company (***).

Companies that distribute products designed, manufactured or assembled in France: Manufacturers (***) produce their products, part of which are made in France. They have no distribution network of their own. Manufacturer-distributors (***) produce their products, part of which are made in France. ...

3.4 Number of stores and geographical breakdown

Growth in the number of sports stores

Like the sector's sales, the number of players operating in the sporting goods trade in specialist stores was fairly stable prior to ****. By ****, there will be an increase in the number of establishments, with *,*** companies operating under the corresponding NAF code.

Number of companies ...

3.5 Web analysis of industry players

Traffic trends :

Décathlon traffic trends (***) France, ****-****, in millions of visits Source: ****

The number of visitors to the website fluctuates between around ** and ** million per month . It should be noted that the drop in April-May **** is due to a change in measurement by Semrush.

Evolution of Nike traffic ...

4 Offer analysis

4.1 An abundance of products

The sporting goods market covers a vast range of products, both in terms of types (***). Nevertheless, these are not the most dynamic segments: between **** and ****, basketball products, for example, saw global growth of +**%. Soccer and running gear grew by +*%. The distribution of sales depends on each retailer: for example, in ****, sneaker ...

4.2 Variable prices

Budget brands: these generally offer affordable products for everyone, with no particular visual distinction. This enables them to target a wide audience and make sporting activities affordable to all, with prices ranging from €* to €** depending on the product. Low-cost brands include Artengo and Kalenji, for example. Mid-range brands: these offer products ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Regulations

Textile products in particular are subject to transparency obligations in terms of product composition. According to the DGCCRFlabelling or marking of textile products is governed by a Community text, directly applicable in all member states".

As far as sportswear is concerned, trademarks are particularly threatened by counterfeiting. According to the EUIPO(***), ...

6 Companies

6.1 Segmentation

  • Skis Rossignol
  • Salomon (Amer Sport groupe)
  • Babolat
  • PIQ
  • Go Sport France
  • Adidas
  • Puma Groupe
  • Courir France
  • Foot Locker
  • Sunset Sport
  • Glisshop (Lafreto groupe)
  • Intersport France
  • Quiksilver Bilabong
  • Sport 2000
  • N4 Brands Fitness Boutique
  • Planet Fitness Equipements
  • Ekosport
  • Décathlon
  • Decathlon Groupe
  • Aptonia (Decathlon)
  • Private Sport Shop
  • JD Sport
  • Intersport International
  • Columbia Sports Wear
  • Berger Camping
  • Butterfly
  • Cornilleau
  • la Boule Bleue
  • Obut
  • Ekoï
  • Aigle
  • Lafuma
  • Gilbert Rugby
  • Running Conseil
  • Au Vieux Campeur
  • Venum
  • Blaise Frères

List of charts presented in this market study

  • Worldwide sporting goods retail market and forecasts
  • Sales of sporting goods in specialized stores (NAF code 47.64Z)
  • French sporting goods market, by product category
  • French sporting activities
  • Frequency of sports activities
Show more Hide

All our studies are available online in PDF format

Take a look at an example of our research on another market!

Do you have a question about this study?   +44 238 097 0676

Latest news

Intersport and Go Sport hot on Decathlon's heels in France - 11/04/2024
  • Stabilization of like-for-like sales last year at Intersport.
  • Increase in sales following the acquisition of Go Sport: 3.65 billion euros, i.e. **an increase of 11.2% compared with 2022.
  • Projected openings: Between 15 and 20 new stores planned each year
Decathlon: all the 2023 performance figures - 05/04/2024
  • - Worldwide sales 2023: 15.6 billion euros, up +4.4% on 2022
  • - Decathlon presence: 78 countries.
  • - Number of products sold worldwide last year: 1.19 billion.
  • - Share of digital sales: 17.4%
  • - Sales in France: 4.752 billion euros, up +1.24% on 2022.
  • - Total number of stores worldwide: 1,749, including 319 in France.
  • - Total number of employees: 101,000, including 24,000 in France.
Ekoï aims to revolutionize the bicycle pedal - 28/03/2024
  • - Weight of the new pedal developed by Pédalissime: 85 grams, compared with 120 grams for competitors.
  • - Pédalissime takes on market giants such as Look and Shimano.
  • - Pédalissime was founded by Jean-Christophe Rattel, head of Ekoï, in association with Raphaël Dalle
  • - The "PW8" pedal has been tested by several professional teams and is homologated by the International Cycling Union.
  • - All pedals will be made in France.
  • - The bicycle pedal market is a niche but global one.
Decathlon revolutionizes itself to become a global brand - 13/03/2024
  • - Company sales: 15.4 billion euros
  • - Number of stores: Over 1700
  • - Presence in 69 countries
  • - Number of brands developed by employees : Over 70
  • - Number of disciplines covered by brands: Around one hundred
  • - Focus on product-related services: rental, second-hand, subscription, recycling, etc.
Discover Ekosport Rent, the new Sport 2000 brand | Explore Ekosport Rent, the new Sport 2000 brand - 29/02/2024
  • - Sport 2000 has launched a new mountain brand, Ekosport Rent, for the 2023-2024 winter season.
  • - 32 Ekosport Rent outlets have been opened for this winter.
  • - The sales mix of these stores is 60-65% rental and 35-40% sales.
  • - Sport 2000's objective is to open a further 20-30 stores next season, and eventually to reach a network of around 100 Ekosport Rent stores.
  • - Sport 2000 currently has 241 stores in ski resorts.
4.5% growth for Sport 2000 in 2023 thanks to new openings - 27/02/2024
  • Sport 2000 Group sales in 2023 were 841 million euros.
  • - Sales were up 4.5% on the previous year.
  • - 65% of sales came from the Sport 2000 brand network.
  • - The total number of Sport 2000 stores in 2023 was 710.
  • - Sport 2000's ambition is to generate sales of 1 billion euros by 2028.

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. :

Skis Rossignol
Salomon (Amer Sport groupe)
Go Sport France
Puma Groupe
Courir France
Foot Locker
Sunset Sport
Glisshop (Lafreto groupe)
Intersport France

Choosing this study means :

Access to more than 35 hours of work

Our studies are the result of over 35 hours of research and analysis. Using our studies allows you to devote more time and added value to your projects.

Benefit from 6 years' experience and over 1,500 industry reports already produced

Our expertise enables us to produce comprehensive studies in all sectors, including niche and emerging markets.

Our know-how and methodology enable us to produce reports that offer unique value for money.

Access to several thousand articles and paid-for data

Businesscoot has access to all the paid economic press as well as exclusive databases to carry out its market research (over 30,000 articles and private sources).

To enhance our research, our analysts also use web indicators (semrush, trends, etc.) to identify market trends and company strategies. (Consult our paying sources)

Guaranteed support after your purchase

A team dedicated to after-sales service, to guarantee you a high level of satisfaction. +44 238 097 0676

A digital format designed for our users

Not only do you have access to a PDF, but also to a digital version designed for our customers. This version gives you access to sources, data in Excel format and graphics. The content of the study can therefore be easily retrieved and adapted for your specific needs.

Our offers :

the sports distribution market | France

89 €
  • What are the figures on the size and growth of the market?
  • What is driving the growth of the market and its evolution?
  • What is the positioning of companies in the value chain?
  • Data from several dozen databases

Pack 5 études (-15%) France

75.6 € / study
378 € instead of 445 € -15%
  • 5 études au prix de 75,6€HT par étude à choisir parmi nos 800 titres sur le catalogue France pendant 12 mois
  • Conservez -15% sur les études supplémentaires achetées
  • Choisissez le remboursement des crédits non consommés au terme des 12 mois (durée du pack)

Consultez les conditions du pack et de remboursement des crédits non consommés.


Our customer references

They have consulted our studies Discover the opinions (+500)

Malcolm Vincent
Linkedin logo

Malcolm Vincent

Astoria Finance

Gregoire de Castelnau
Linkedin logo

Gregoire de Castelnau

Stags Participations

Timothé Huignard
Linkedin logo

Timothé Huignard


Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff
Linkedin logo

Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff


Aymeric Granet
Linkedin logo

Aymeric Granet

Publicis Consultant

interviews & case studies All interviews and case studies (45)

La pépite Interview

BFM Business

Paul-Alexis Kebabtchieff

Boston Consulting Group

Marie Guibart

Kea Partners

Elaine, Durand

Crédit Agricole, Information & Veille

Philippe Dilasser

Initiative & Finance

Anne Baudry


Amaury Wernert

Kroll (Duff & Phelps)

Smart Leaders Interview


Do you have a question ?
Our team is at your disposal at   +44 238 097 0676