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Retail Resilience

We spoke to independent footwear retailers across the country about the challenges they have faced this year, the strategies they’ve implemented, and how they envision the year ahead. Each of the stores featured on these pages is a past winner of our Gold Medal Service Award...

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Footwear Insight

Magazine Archives

The Comeback

After a rollercoaster of a year, retailers planning for 2021 face a daunting challenge. After unprecedented business challenges and new hurdles to navigate seemingly daily, there’s no roadmap for envisioning the shape of the year to follow. The good news: Run shops see opportunity ahead.

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The Mask Rundown

Running masks are a newly evolving category filled with opportunity, if you can get past the challenges. Brands and retailers share their learnings in attempts to accommodate customers.

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Get Ready for Albert 2

In February 2021, Aetrex Worldwide is launching the next generation of its 3D foot scanning technology, known as Albert. Aetrex sees Albert 2 as not only being revolutionary in 3D foot scanning, but also as a profit center for retailers.

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A Holiday Dozen

As we head deeper into the crucial Holiday retail season, here are 12 facts and figures to keep in mind. 1. Shoppers Appear to Be Trading Up. More than 50 percent of surveyed consumers expect to trade up to better quality products this year. 2. 41 percent of shoppers are “very likely” to...

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Stars in a Supporting Role

When the topic of stellar service at retail comes up, most often the focus is on the service that retailers offer customers. But for retailers, service also comes in the form of the relationships they have with their vendor and brand partners.

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Sneakers Step Out

Whether it’s for a head-clearing run, a soul-refreshing walk with a friend or just an active day on your feet, sneakers are the shoes that do it all. For Spring ’21, brands are offering feature-packed options with comfort to spare. Even better? These looks never compromise on style.

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Another European Brand in Play: Birkenstock Reportedly On Block

Iconic brand Birkenstock, owned by a German family since its founding in 1774, is reportedly in negotiations to a sell a majority stake to a private equity firm. Luxembourg-based CVC Capital Partners is said to have the inside track for a controlling interest for the company, which sold...

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2021 Buzzy Consumer Trends Outlined

“Craving Convenience,” “Outdoor Oasis” and “Playing with Time” are among the Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2021, according to global market research firm Euromonitor International. Craving Convenience is described as the desire for a return to the on-the-go simplicities of pre-pandemic life.

Read More

‘Futuristic’ Playkix from Geox

Geox is introducing a fun, techy new athletic shoe for kids called Playkix in spring/summer 2021. Designed as a “futuristic” running shoe, Playkix captures foot movement and conveys information via Bluetooth to the Playkix app. In the app, kids can engage with avatars that...

Read More

Biion Footwear Launches Wonder Woman Shoe

Ontario, Canada-based brand Biion partnered with Warner Brothers ahead of the recent global release of Wonder Woman 1984 on an exclusive, limited-edition footwear style inspired by the superhero. The Wonder Woman Icon shoe, available in adult unisex ($110) and kid ($60) sizes, features...

Read More

In The News: NRF, Native, Big 5, Academy, Asics

NRF 2021: Retail’s Big Show-Chapter 2, scheduled for June at the Javits Center in New York City, is moving to an online format. In a statement, the trade group said the convention center will unlikely be available in June since it’s currently serving as a field hospital for...

Read More

Q&A: The Atlanta Shoe Market

The Atlanta Shoe Market, scheduled to take place Feb. 20-22 at Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, GA, is on track to be the first in-person industry trade show of 2021 for many in the U.S. footwear market. We spoke with Laura Conwell-O’Brien, executive director of The Atlanta Shoe Market.

Read More

Industry Trade Groups, Companies Against New Vietnam Tariffs

The American Apparel & Footwear Associations (AAFA), Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America (FDRA), National Retail Federation (NRF) and the U.S. Fashion Industry Association are supporting the more than 200 apparel and footwear companies that have asked...

Read More

Footwear Insight

EXTRA Archives

Nike’s Three ‘D’ Strategy Moving Forward

Any run-of-the-mill retailer looking to sell the Swoosh in 2021 can forget about it. Nike is proceeding with its three-pronged approach focused on Digital, Direct-To-Consumer and Differentiated Retail, a strategy that has Wall Street bullish on the company following a second quarter where...

Can Sportsman’s Warehouse Accelerate Soft Goods Sales Under New Ownership?

Sportsman’s Warehouse, the 112-door, publicly-traded chain across 12 U.S. Western states, which will become part of the privately-held Great American Outdoors Group (parent of Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s) during the second half of 2021, is known for its focus on...

Report: Rapper, Former NBA Star Want to Acquire Reebok

Adidas, aiming to divest the Reebok business it acquired 15 years ago for $3.8 billion, has at least one suitor group interested in the Vector brand. The Three Stripes has said it will formally announce its plans for Reebok by March 10.

Wolverine Worldwide Promotes Jim Zwiers, Names Ecommerce President

Jim Zwiers, president of Wolverine Worldwide’s International Group, has been named president of the Rockford, MI company’s Global Operations Group. Zwiers, a 23-year WWW veteran, will retain the international group position and responsibilities he has had since 2014.

Foot Locker Exec Joins Soles4Souls; FDRA Promotes Thomas Crockett

Andrew Gray, EVP and Chief Commercial Office for Foot Locker, has joined the board of Nashville-based nonprofit Soles4Souls. Elsewhere, the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA) recently promoted Thomas Crockett.

In The News: Eneslow, DTLR, OR Show, Adidas

Eneslow Shoes and Orthotics, the 112-year old, family-owned specialty retailer has relocated its flagship NYC store uptown to 1319 Third Avenue at 75th Street, next to Citarella. All Eneslow staff, custom workshop and complete shoe and orthotic services are in full operation at the site.

JD Sports Fashion Acquires Family-Owned Shoe Palace Corp.

The British footprint in U.S. retail athletic specialty is getting larger. JD Sports Fashion, which paid $558 million for The Finish Line in June 2018, has now purchased the San Jose, CA-based Shoe Palace chain for $325 million cash and a 20 percent stake in JD’s wholly-owned U.S. company...

DSW Parent Leans Into Athleisure, Says ‘Normalized’ Profitability Returns at B-T-S 2021

Designer Brands, waiting for a chief digital officer to come onboard and effects from the COVID-19 pandemic to subside, is currently forecasting “a return to normalized customer behavior or profitability” for the Back-To-School 2021 season. In the meantime, the company’s DSW retail segment will...

Lululemon Readies Footwear Launch For H2/2021

After three years of collaboration with sneaker maker APL, Lululemon will take on the footwear category alone next year. The brand’s offerings in the category, which could include run-, training- and yoga-specific styles, will be introduced in the latter half of 2021 with sell-in slated...

FDRA Adds to Board, Looks to Reinvigorate FFANY

Industry organization Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America has added eight new members to its board of directors. The group of footwear execs joining the board will play a role as FDRA assumes control and aims to reinvigorate the Fashion Footwear Association of New York...

2021 Buzzy Consumer Trends Outlined

“Craving Convenience,” “Outdoor Oasis” and “Playing with Time” are among the Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2021, according to global market research firm Euromonitor International. Craving Convenience is described as the desire for a return to the on-the-go simplicities of pre-pandemic life.

Read More

‘Futuristic’ Playkix from Geox

Geox is introducing a fun, techy new athletic shoe for kids called Playkix in spring/summer 2021. Designed as a “futuristic” running shoe, Playkix captures foot movement and conveys information via Bluetooth to the Playkix app. In the app, kids can engage with avatars that...

Read More

Biion Footwear Launches Wonder Woman Shoe

Ontario, Canada-based brand Biion partnered with Warner Brothers ahead of the recent global release of Wonder Woman 1984 on an exclusive, limited-edition footwear style inspired by the superhero. The Wonder Woman Icon shoe, available in adult unisex ($110) and kid ($60) sizes, features...

Read More

In The News: NRF, Native, Big 5, Academy, Asics

NRF 2021: Retail’s Big Show-Chapter 2, scheduled for June at the Javits Center in New York City, is moving to an online format. In a statement, the trade group said the convention center will unlikely be available in June since it’s currently serving as a field hospital for...

Read More

Q&A: The Atlanta Shoe Market

The Atlanta Shoe Market, scheduled to take place Feb. 20-22 at Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, GA, is on track to be the first in-person industry trade show of 2021 for many in the U.S. footwear market. We spoke with Laura Conwell-O’Brien, executive director of The Atlanta Shoe Market.

Read More

Industry Trade Groups, Companies Against New Vietnam Tariffs

The American Apparel & Footwear Associations (AAFA), Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America (FDRA), National Retail Federation (NRF) and the U.S. Fashion Industry Association are supporting the more than 200 apparel and footwear companies that have asked...

Read More

Footwear Insight

EXTRA Archives

DSW Parent Leans Into Athleisure, Says ‘Normalized’ Profitability Returns at B-T-S 2021

Designer Brands, waiting for a chief digital officer to come onboard and effects from the COVID-19 pandemic to subside, is currently forecasting “a return to normalized customer behavior or profitability” for the Back-To-School 2021 season. In the meantime, the company’s DSW retail segment will...

Lululemon Readies Footwear Launch For H2/2021

After three years of collaboration with sneaker maker APL, Lululemon will take on the footwear category alone next year. The brand’s offerings in the category, which could include run-, training- and yoga-specific styles, will be introduced in the latter half of 2021 with sell-in slated...

FDRA Adds to Board, Looks to Reinvigorate FFANY

Industry organization Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America has added eight new members to its board of directors. The group of footwear execs joining the board will play a role as FDRA assumes control and aims to reinvigorate the Fashion Footwear Association of New York...

In The News: inov-8, Opalux, SFIA, Tecnica

UK-based footwear brand inov-8 has donated £9,600 ($12,981) towards the planting of new trees and the restoration of peat habitats in the battle against climate change. The money was raised through a “Green Friday” sales initiative on its website and a donation was made to the non-profit...

New Balance Shifting U.S. Manufacturing Base

As privately held New Balance prepares to open its “Factory of the Future” in Methuen, MA next summer, the company has publicly disclosed plans to shutter its Boston neighborhood (Brighton) factory on Feb. 5, resulting in 63 layoffs. New Balance disclosed its plans in a regulatory filing with...

Spyder Launching Lifestyle Footwear Assortment

Ski brand Spyder is getting into footwear. Authentic Brands Group-owned Spyder has struck a licensing deal with Footwear Unlimited that will enable the outdoor sportswear brand to enter the category with an assortment of outdoor, hike, trail, lifestyle and Aprés ski styes for...

Zumiez Sees Expansion Potential in its Own Delivery Service

Currently available in 24 U.S. markets and 150 stores, Zumiez Delivery may provide the specialty retailer with an advantage during the holiday season as traditional shipping companies set restrictions due to capacity constraints. The in-house delivery service, staffed by Zumiez employees...

Casual + Retro Are Trending at Journeys

Genesco President and CEO Mimi Vaughn thinks trends among the banner’s fashionable teen set have steady legs and that the “casual trend” offers upside potential for its Journeys business.

UCLA Partners with Nike After UA Split

UCLA Athletics has entered a six-year agreement with Nike and the Jordan Brand for the brands to be the Bruins’ official athletic footwear, apparel and equipment provider beginning July 1, 2021. The move comes amidst a legal battle between Under Armour and UCLA. In June, UA announced...

In The News: FootJoy & Lubrizol, Wrangler & Twisted X, Informa Markets and More

FootJoy’s new FJ Stratos spikeless golf shoe leverages Lubrizol’s advanced material science for traction on and off the course. Estane TRX TPU from Lubrizol, a rubber alternative, provides traction on wet and dry surfaces. The material’s flexibility also helps ensure the successful molding of...

2021 Buzzy Consumer Trends Outlined

“Craving Convenience,” “Outdoor Oasis” and “Playing with Time” are among the Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2021, according to global market research firm Euromonitor International. Craving Convenience is described as the desire for a return to the on-the-go simplicities of pre-pandemic life.

Read More

‘Futuristic’ Playkix from Geox

Geox is introducing a fun, techy new athletic shoe for kids called Playkix in spring/summer 2021. Designed as a “futuristic” running shoe, Playkix captures foot movement and conveys information via Bluetooth to the Playkix app. In the app, kids can engage with avatars that...

Read More

Biion Footwear Launches Wonder Woman Shoe

Ontario, Canada-based brand Biion partnered with Warner Brothers ahead of the recent global release of Wonder Woman 1984 on an exclusive, limited-edition footwear style inspired by the superhero. The Wonder Woman Icon shoe, available in adult unisex ($110) and kid ($60) sizes, features...

Read More

In The News: NRF, Native, Big 5, Academy, Asics

NRF 2021: Retail’s Big Show-Chapter 2, scheduled for June at the Javits Center in New York City, is moving to an online format. In a statement, the trade group said the convention center will unlikely be available in June since it’s currently serving as a field hospital for...

Read More

Q&A: The Atlanta Shoe Market

The Atlanta Shoe Market, scheduled to take place Feb. 20-22 at Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, GA, is on track to be the first in-person industry trade show of 2021 for many in the U.S. footwear market. We spoke with Laura Conwell-O’Brien, executive director of The Atlanta Shoe Market.

Read More

Industry Trade Groups, Companies Against New Vietnam Tariffs

The American Apparel & Footwear Associations (AAFA), Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America (FDRA), National Retail Federation (NRF) and the U.S. Fashion Industry Association are supporting the more than 200 apparel and footwear companies that have asked...

Read More

Footwear Insight

EXTRA Archives

Q&A: The Atlanta Shoe Market

The Atlanta Shoe Market, scheduled to take place Feb. 20-22 at Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta, GA, is on track to be the first in-person industry trade show of 2021 for many in the U.S. footwear market. We spoke with Laura Conwell-O’Brien, executive director of The Atlanta Shoe Market.

Read More

Industry Trade Groups, Companies Against New Vietnam Tariffs

The American Apparel & Footwear Associations (AAFA), Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America (FDRA), National Retail Federation (NRF) and the U.S. Fashion Industry Association are supporting the more than 200 apparel and footwear companies that have asked...

Read More

Asics Leans Into ‘Sound Mind, Sound Body’ Messaging

The Japanese brand, which is promising an ongoing focus on the run specialty channel, is taking to social media channels worldwide today to engage consumers with the message that is a Latin phrase embedded in its brand name...

Read More

Journeys Group Scores Strong Full-Price Sales in Q4

The Genesco-owned retail chain Journeys realized a 4 percent drop in comparable sales (Stores and Direct) for the period ended Dec. 26, 2020 as it recorded strong full-price selling. Same-store sales declined 14 percent, but ecommerce revenues rose 49 percent with results bolstered by...

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In The News: Mizuno, Reebok, Dr. Martens, JD Sports, OS1st, The Good Feet Store, Hari Mari

Mizuno has launched the 17th edition of its Wave Inspire Running Shoe. The most notable upgrade in the latest version of the Wave Inspire is the inclusion of the brand’s Mizuno Enerzy foam technology in the heel wedge for increased softness and responsiveness.

Read More

Nike’s Three ‘D’ Strategy Moving Forward

Any run-of-the-mill retailer looking to sell the Swoosh in 2021 can forget about it. Nike is proceeding with its three-pronged approach focused on Digital, Direct-To-Consumer and Differentiated Retail, a strategy that has Wall Street bullish on the company following a second quarter where...

Read More

Can Sportsman’s Warehouse Accelerate Soft Goods Sales Under New Ownership?

Sportsman’s Warehouse, the 112-door, publicly-traded chain across 12 U.S. Western states, which will become part of the privately-held Great American Outdoors Group (parent of Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s) during the second half of 2021, is known for its focus on...

Read More

Report: Rapper, Former NBA Star Want to Acquire Reebok

Adidas, aiming to divest the Reebok business it acquired 15 years ago for $3.8 billion, has at least one suitor group interested in the Vector brand. The Three Stripes has said it will formally announce its plans for Reebok by March 10.

Read More

FOOTWEAR INSIGHT INDEX

With the second quarter closing next week, ominous signs remain for the U.S. economy in this persistent pandemic environment as the number of active U.S. cases rose for a 10th straight day on June 22 to 1.26 million and 23 states reported increases in the number of cases. The Congressional Budget Office estimates the U.S. economy will generate $8 trillion less in economic activity over the next decade than it predicted months ago. And a report in The Atlantic suggests four factors — a great business die-off, the household fiscal cliff, state and local budget shortfalls and the persistent pandemic crisis — put the U.S. risk for a depression. Amid this backdrop, the Dow generated nearly 59 percent of its weekly 261.80-point gain for the week on the period’s final day, June 22. The action helped the Dow post a 1.02 percent increase for the period, about even with the Segment’s 1.06 percent increase as 12 stocks rose and eight declined. Aside from Mizuno, which benefited from currency effects, Nike and Deckers were the period’s biggest gainers. The Swoosh received four stock price target hikes from investment banks ahead of its scheduled fourth-quarter earnings report on June 25. Meanwhile, Nike and Puma are merging running technology and style into styles for the golf course, including The Cat’s RS-G and The Swoosh’s Air Max 270. Shoe Carnival reported that its 389 re-opened U.S. and Puerto Rico stores experienced a 28.1 percent rise in second quarter comparable store sales through  June 22, with brick-and-mortar up 4.0 percent and e-commerce gaining nearly 470 percent year-over-year. Under Armour Founder Kevin Plank has sold his Washington, D.C. mansion for $17.3 million after a reported two years on the market at a 41 percent discount from his 2018 asking price of $29.5 million. — Bob McGee 
The Footwear Insight Index tracks 20 of the most important publicly traded companies that have a substantial footwear business (6 retailers, 14 brands).
Index base of 100 is key to the closing prices of 12/29/17

INDEX: 123

1.06%

Weekly Review

Company name
(Ticker Symbol)

% Change over week
Price 06/15/20 • Price 06/22/20

ASICS Corp.
7936.T

0.35%

$11.38 • $11.34

Boot Barn
BOOT

1.09%

$22.84 • $22.59

Crocs
CROX

2.46%

$31.71 • $32.49

Designer Brands
DBI

4.49%

$7.13 • $6.81

Genesco
GCO

6.41%

$22.51 • $20.73

Mizuno
8022.T

14.12%

$18.41 • $21.01

Puma
PMMAF

1.65%

$72.90 • $74.10

Shoe Carnival
SKVL

0.26%

$27.02 • $27.09

Steve Madden
SHOO

0.13%

$23.30 • $23.33

VF Corp.
VFC

0.82%

$63.12 • $62.60

Company name
(Ticker Symbol)

% Change over week
Price 06/15/20 • Price 06/22/20

Adidas
addyy

0.72%

$132.53 • $133.49

Caleres
CAL

5.71%

$8.58 • $8.09

Deckers
DECK

3.71%

$193.55 • $200.73

Foot Locker
FL

0.99%

$29.23 • $29.52

GEOX
GEO.MI

4.49%

$0.89 • $0.85

Nike
NKE

1.72%

$97.83 • $99.51

Rocky Brands
RCKY

2.74%

$20.78 • $20.21

Skechers
SKX

5.66%

$33.20 • $31.32

Under Armour
UAA

3.55%

$9.86 • $9.51

Wolverine
WWW

0.26%

$23.08 • $23.14

TOTAL
Week over week

1.06%

$849.49 • $858.46