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Slovenia Business Week no. 22/2005: Elan Gaining Share on Global Market, Head Says

According to head of Elan Ski Matjaz Sarabon, the company now controls 7% of the world market and is looking to increase its share to around 10% by 2009

Contrary to popular opinion, Slovenian ski maker Elan is making inroads in the global ski equipment market, head of Elan Ski Matjaz Sarabon told the daily Delo on Monday, 23 May. According to him, the company now controls 7% of the world market and is looking to increase its share to around 10% by 2009. This means that Elan would become one of the five leading winter sports brands in the world by then, Sarabon said in an interview published in Delo.

Sarabon said that currently every seventh pair of skis sold in the world is produced by Elan at its plant in Begunje.

Moreover, Elan currently accounts for 13% of global research and development in skis, as it performs R&D and produces skis for other ski manufacturers as well. In this respect, Elan is the 3rd or 4th biggest in the world, he added.

In the medium-term, Elan Ski hopes to produce 600,000 pairs of skis annually at its plant in Begunje. The company hopes to increase the production of own-brand skis, while the share of skis made for other companies would drop to around 35%, he said.

Sarabon also told Delo he was not overly concerned by the faltering interest in skiing. According to him, Elan could take advantage of confusion on the market that could arise as a result of takeovers or mergers among other companies.

"We have decided what our target customers are for this very reason," he said, adding that Elan was working on all-around winter sports solutions, not just on skis.

Moreover, Sarabon said that a foreign takeover of Elan could help the company begin concentrating more on the market rather than on local quarrels that have dogged the company since Slovenia's independence.

According to him, the downsizing of the ski market will mean the end for small producers, who are likely to be acquired by the big players. However, he does not think that Elan will be acquired by a foreign rival.

Source: Slovene Press Agency STA

Author: STA