DECATHLON has announced the acquisition of Bergfreunde, an online specialist retailer for mountain sports, climbing, and outdoor equipment. The purchase agreement, which was signed on November 24th, is pending regulatory approval.
Bergfreunde was founded in Germany in 2006 and has a strong presence in 11 European countries: Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, France, Finland, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom. In addition, Bergfreunde operates a European e-commerce platform.
Through this major investment, DECATHLON intends to support Bergfreunde’s leadership in the long term, as they continue their strong development and growth journey. The partnership will benefit Bergfreunde’s expert and passionate customers, its partners and its teams.
Fully aligned with DECATHLON’s development strategy, Bergfreunde is an opportunity to connect to new customers in the outdoor-premium market segment via a fully digital business model, while growing its presence in several major markets in Europe.
This investment represents a real partnership between two brands which share the same human values and commitment to people and to the planet.
Upon closing, Bergfreunde will remain an autonomous & independent subsidiary, operating under the Bergfreunde brand, with their current business model being unchanged. Bergfreunde management will remain in their current roles.
Barbara Martin Coppola, Chief Executive Officer of DECATHLON, says: “This strategic partnership will enable DECATHLON to strengthen our global outdoor offering with a recognised and valued premium pure-player. With a strong presence in several European markets, including Germany, Europe’s biggest outdoor market, Bergfreunde will add to our ecosystem, alongside Alltricks. We are determined to accompany Bergfreunde’s teams as they continue to accelerate their development to the benefit of their customers and partners, to move people through the wonders of sport.”
“DECATHLON is a financially strong and long-term operating partner, and we are confident they are the right partner for us as we enter this next phase of growth. We look forward to benefiting from DECATHLON’s leadership in sustainability, internationalization and scaling,” explains Matthias Gebhard, Managing Director of Bergfreunde. “Bergfreunde has experienced significant growth under Backcountry’s ownership, and we are thankful for our successful partnership.“