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SNEWS and Outdoor Industry Association Announce Retail Training Partne

- SNEWS® and Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) have announced a partnership created to ensure the highest level of retail training programs and content are available to outdoor specialty retailers.

SNEWS and Outdoor Industry Association Announce Retail Training Partnership

BOULDER, CO, January 6, 2010 – SNEWS® and Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) have announced a partnership created to ensure the highest level of retail training programs and content are available to outdoor specialty retailers. Beginning in 2010, Outdoor University® and the SNEWS® Retail College will officially become affiliate programs – each supporting, promoting and helping to develop collaborative training programs online, in print and in person.

Both the SNEWS Retail College and Outdoor University are focused on providing specialty retail store owners, managers, buyers and staff the necessary tools to help improve business operations, customer service, product knowledge, sales techniques, merchandising skills and market competitiveness.

“We’ve been seeking the ideal partner for our successful Outdoor University program and we’ve found it in the SNEWS Retail College,” said Ann Obenchain, vice president of member services and marketing for OIA. “By joining forces with a clear market leader in sales, product trends, selling tools, and merchandising content for the outdoor industry, we are able to better serve our retail members and all outdoor industry retailers through a centralized, easy-to-access resource.”

“The success of any industry depends on all members of the retail community having access to the best sales, business and product education and training possible,” said Michael Hodgson, president of SNEWS. “ The OIA Outdoor University program is the ideal collaborative partner for the SNEWS Retail College and today’s announcement that we’re joining forces underscores our promise to retail owners, management and staff to provide them with complete access to the best possible training materials and programs available.”

With the new partnership retailers who are registered on either affiliate virtual campus – The SNEWS Retail College or Outdoor University – will have full access to an unparalleled wealth of retail training and business education content.

Registered members of the SNEWS Retail College and Outdoor University will receive:

  • Regular emails that include merchandising tips, sales training tips, links to relevant news and information on business and retail staff training, designed exclusively for SNEWS Retail College and Outdoor University members.
  • In early Spring, the SNEWS Retail College, an affiliate of Outdoor University will produce its first in a series of retail training manuals that will be sent free to all registered retail members of the SNEWS Retail College program.
  • OIA will provide all SNEWS retail subscribers with complimentary registration to any Outdoor University online workshop.

SNEWS and OIA will also be developing a SNEWS Retail College / Outdoor University seminar companion guide to launch Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2010. This will be the ideal companion study guide to all educational seminars offered at Outdoor Retailer Summer Market with summary and information notes for each seminar, and a place for attendees to write notes when attending seminars.

For more information, visit


About Outdoor Industry Association

Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) is a national trade association whose mission is to ensure the growth and success of the outdoor industry. OIA provides trade services for over 4000 manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, sales representatives and retailers in the outdoor industry. OIA programs include representation in government/legislative affairs, market and social research, business-to-business services and youth outreach initiatives. Educational events include the annual Rendezvous®, Outdoor University®, and the Capitol Summit. Outdoor Industry Association is based in Boulder, Colorado, and is the title sponsor of the Outdoor Retailer tradeshows. For more information go to or call 303.444.3353.

About SNEWS® (Specialty News)

Recognized as the most trusted outdoor and fitness news and business information resource, SNEWS® has long set the industry standards for late-breaking insider news, trend reporting, sales and merchandising training, and product/company news for the outdoor and fitness industries. The SNEWS® Retail College leverages unmatched product and business education content in both SNEWS and Backpacker magazine, along with trade association partner OIA’s Outdoor University to provide an open-book, online university-style study platform to ensure effective and long-term educational and development opportunities for retail staff and, as a result, increased staff retention. For more information, visit