NPD Group Acquires Sports Market Research Firm


The NPD Group, a leading provider of point-of-sale (POS) information, is acquiring Leisure Trends, a market research firm specializing in the sports and recreation sector.  Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Leisure Trends has built its market research around its Most Active Americans Panel™ which includes over 2 million outdoor oriented, affluent, active consumers.  Leisure Trends also maintains a network of specialty sports and outdoor retailers for point of sale data and channel checks.

Leisure time has 200 clients world-wide and has been one of the fastest growing market research companies in the U.S.  The firm was founded in 1989 to track skier and snowboarder consumer trends.

Press release below and can be found at

The NPD Group Acquires Leisure Trends Retail Sales Tracking and Consumer Research for Sports and Recreation

New Business Will Offer Broad Channel Coverage Plus Deep Consumer Insight

BOULDER, CO, October 15, 2013 – The NPD Group, Inc., a global information company, has signed an agreement to acquire the retail sales tracking and consumer research businesses of Leisure Trends, the Boulder, CO-based leader in market research for the sports and recreation industries.

The combined businesses will provide the most comprehensive sales information available to the sports and recreation industries.  Together Leisure Trends and NPD collect sales data from over 26,000 doors spanning all industry channels of distribution, including Sporting Goods, Specialty Stores, Department Stores, Mass Merchants, and eCommerce.  Specialty Store coverage encompasses Outdoor, Snow Sports, Cycling, Running, and Independent Footwear stores.  This data collection footprint gives the combined company the broadest, most comprehensive look at retail sales available in the sports industry.

The new business will also offer proprietary online panels with access to over 2 million individuals for insight into consumer behavior, preferences, and purchase drivers.  The Most Active Americans Panel™(MAAP™) is a quantitative panel of early adopters who can help predict trends in the broader sports market.  The Core Athlete Outdoor Enthusiast Panel offers access to individuals who participate in specific activities or sports for targeted research.

“Combining our complementary strengths will give us a new business greater than the sum of the parts,” said Dennis Brown, Group President, Americas Commercial Business for NPD.   “Leisure Trends has deep ties in the industry, with strong retail partnerships and access to the ‘alpha consumer’.  As we integrate our businesses, we will be able to offer new solutions for our clients as well as establish a strong platform for international growth.”

Jim Kelley has been named President of Leisure Trends, An NPD Group Company.  He will work closely with Mike Kuhl, President of NPD’s Sports practice, on integration plans.  Charlie Cooper, formerly President of Leisure Trends, will remain working with NPD through year end.  All three will report to Dennis Brown.

“As a global leader in market research, NPD has the data processing infrastructure and operational scope to address the growing needs of the Sports and Recreation industries,” said Kelley.  “Together, we look forward to expanding our breadth and depth of information, while also improving efficiency, including faster data delivery, which we know is critical for our clients.”

The transaction is expected to close on or before October 31, 2013.

Note:  The NPD Group, Inc. acquisition does not include Leisure Trends’ Customer Relationship Management (CRM) business.  This business is being spun off as a separate company called Ascent CRM.  This new company will be headed by Scott Buelter and will continue to service Leisure Trends’ existing CRM clients and contracts.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group provides global information and advisory services to drive better business decisions.  By combining unique data assets with unmatched industry expertise, we help our clients track their markets, understand consumers, and drive profitable growth.  Sectors covered include automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, entertainment, fashion, food / foodservice, home, luxury, mobile, office supplies, sports, technology, toys, and video games.  For more information, visit and  Follow us on Twitter:@npdgroup.


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