International swimwear brand Arena is set to celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2023 on a high note, as it achieved exceptional financial results in 2022. The brand generated a revenue of €141 million, representing a remarkable 45% increase compared to the previous year. Moreover, this marked a 13% growth from its pre-pandemic levels, demonstrating Arena’s enduring success since its establishment in 1973 by Horst Dassler.

Arena’s revenue growth in 2022 was observed across all markets, distribution channels, and product categories. The brand’s core business, training swimwear, witnessed a notable growth of 38%. Swimming accessories also experienced a significant increase of 32%, followed by beachwear at 24% and competition swimwear at 14%. Particularly, Arena’s competition apparel and wetsuits, including the sought-after Powerskin Storm wetsuit, have achieved commercial success, indicating a rising trend of open water swimming in seas and lakes.

The remarkable sales performance of Arena in 2022 can be attributed to several factors. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the brand managed to achieve substantial growth compared to 2019, surpassing its pre-pandemic results. The value of orders for Spring/Summer 2023 exceeded expectations, exhibiting a 33% increase from the previous year. Additionally, despite the socio-economic challenges faced, Arena successfully limited its average price increase to 7%.

Geographically, Arena witnessed its strongest growth in the United States, with a remarkable 54% increase in revenue compared to 2021. Europe also experienced substantial growth at 42%, while other regions achieved a similar growth rate of 42%. France remains the brand’s main market, followed by Italy and the USA. However, with the exceptional growth rate in the United States, Arena projects it to become their primary market in the coming years.

Arena’s success can also be attributed to its online sales performance. The brand strategically invested in its infrastructure, including its headquarters in Tolentino and a new e-commerce hub in Munich. These investments contributed to the brand’s robust online sales growth of 71% in Europe in 2022. Online sales accounted for 25% of Arena’s total revenue, which includes sales from prominent platforms such as Zalando, Amazon, and Swim Outlet. Additionally, Arena’s own e-shop contributed 7% of the total revenue.

Sustainability is a key focus for Arena, as the brand is committed to introducing more sustainable packaging. Over the past two years, Arena has increased its use of FSC-certified paper and reduced the reliance on plastic. In 2023, Arena swimming goggles will be packaged in 100% recyclable cardboard packaging. Moreover, Arena aims to produce a majority of its swimwear using recycled fibers derived from plastic bottles and industrial waste, without compromising on product quality and durability.

Arena’s recent product launches reflect its sustainability efforts. The Powerskin ST Next full-body swimsuit, approved by the World Aquatics Federation, is the brand’s first competition swimsuit made with fabric derived from recycled fibers. This product has received a positive response in the market. Additionally, a significant portion of Arena’s Spring/Summer 2023 consumer collection, including swimsuits and beachwear, is made using recycled fibers. These sustainable fabrics are certified by the Global Recycled Standard and are sourced from PET bottles and industrial waste.

With a presence in 128 countries, Arena has established strong connections with the world of swimming and water sports through competition partnerships and financial sponsorships. Over the course of its 50-year history, Arena has sponsored various federations and athletes, including the FINA and LEN federations, as well as 40 individual athletes. The brand’s commitment to water sports is evident in its new advertising campaign, “Planet Water,” which celebrates the essential element of water that unites us all.

Throughout its history, Arena has prioritized corporate social responsibility and worker’s rights. The brand has been a member of the Fair Labor Association since 2011 and became the first Italy-based brand to receive FLA accreditation. This dedication to ethical practices and worker’s rights further solidifies Arena’s position as a leading swimwear brand.

Useful links:
1. Arena Official Website
2. Global Recycled Standard