Summary List Placement
When it comes to the running category, smaller brands are taking the lead.
In general, brands focused heavily on running performance for athletes have reaped the benefits of a pandemic-era fitness and running boom. While US athletic footwear sales declined in the mid-single digits overall in 2020, smaller running brands such as Brooks, On, and Hoka One One “all performed as if there was no global crisis,” NPD sports analyst Matt Powell wrote in his annual athletic footwear and activewear recap.
At the same time larger brands like Nike and Adidas, which sell a broader range of footwear for perfomance running as well as lifestyle, did not see as much growth, especially in the women’s performance category. According to NPD group’s Retail Tracking Service, Brooks’ women’s performance business grew 88% in Q1, with best-sellers like the Adrenaline GTS 21s and the Ghost 13s both priced at $130 a pair. Brooks’ global business grew 42% in Q1 globally, the company said.
Brooks was the largest women’s performance running shoe brand in the quarter, blowing past competitors like ASICS, New Balance, Adidas, and Nike, the latter of which saw its women’s running performance business decline by about 35% in Q1. When it came to men’s performance running brands in Q1, Brooks was second only to Nike.
“Brooks has been building very strong women’s product for a while now,” NPD’s Powell told Insider via email. I think the marketing that they’re running is appropriate — particularly for the new runner — they very judicially expanded their distribution, and I think all of that is paying off for them.”
Sales in women’s merchandise makes up about 58% of Brooks’ total businesses, Brooks chief operating officer Dan Sheridan told Insider in an interview regarding the company’s …read more