Public Relations Company

Public Relations Company  
MEDIA RELEASE 05 November 2008

Camping - the alternative for Aussie families in the economic downturn
Outdoor adventure retailer Anaconda is experiencing strong sales growth despite the economic downturn and opening five new stores before Christmas. Sales have increased by over 20% since the middle of this year.

CEO Toby Darvall puts it down to customers choosing the economical option of taking the family camping instead of on an expensive holiday overseas or even in Australia.

"There is so much gloom and doom around about families having to cut back on life's luxuries and while many other tourism operators and retailers are announcing declining sales, we are actually experiencing growth," said Darvall.

"Anecdotally our customers are telling us they can still afford some outdoor gear for camping, fishing, hiking, cycling and other outdoor activities but don't want to fork out for airfares and expensive holidays.

"Our sales from the camping department has grown from representing less than $7 million from July to November last year to now reaching over $12 million for the same period. Camping has simply become the ideal, cost-effective and fun holiday to bring families together.

"We can set up a family with a basic camping pack for around $500 which is much more affordable and environmentally friendly than a trip overseas. For a week's holiday with the kids, that's only $71 per night much cheaper than any other option. We also rent kayaks and bikes for customers who want to trial products or don't want to own the equipment.

"In tough times, people will get back to basics. Most of us loved camping with the family when we were kids expensive overseas holidays and fancy hotels were just not an option," added Darvall.

Anaconda was founded in November 2004 by Toby Darvall, after selling his share in a camping and army surplus wholesale business he co-founded 13 years previously. He was formerly a business reporter at Melbourne's popular daily, The Age.

The concept behind the stores is based on Anaconda's belief that Australians want to be entertained and have fun while they are shopping. Therefore, pieces of equipment such as climbing gear, tents, gas lanterns and stoves can all be tested in-store. Climbing pinnacles for indoor rock climbing are also in all Anaconda stores to give customers the feel of the 'real experience'.

Anaconda currently has 13 stores two in NSW, four in Queensland, three in Victoria, two in WA, one in SA and one in Tasmania with expansion plans throughout Australia in the near future. Five new stores located in NSW, Victoria and Queensland will open this year.

Each store occupies 3,000 square metres and offers over 35,000 products for camping, fishing, climbing, cycling and kayaking from such famous brands as The North Face, Columbia, Coleman, Spinifex, Mojiko, Merrell, Garmin, Fluid Bikes, Edelrid and Denali.

For customers who haven't decided to invest in the equipment and want to trial it first, Anaconda not only sells products but also rents a range of them out.

Anaconda is giving its customers the chance to win a Renault Koleos valued at $47,000. The competition closes on 31 December 2008 and all Anaconda Adventure Club members are entered into the draw when they make a purchase of $100 or more at Anaconda and present their card.

Anaconda can be contacted on 1300 669 137 or by visiting

Released for Anaconda by Dennis Rutzou Public Relations (
For further information please call Nicola Rutzou or Kim Larochelle on (02) 9413 4244.

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