Skechers moves into 2nd place in the US sports footwear market
Casual footwear brand Skechers has found itself bypassing popular athletic-shoe companies Adidas, Asics and New Balance by taking 2nd place in the US sports footwear market, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.
According to the retail tracker, NPD Group, the California-based company accounted for 5% of the sports-footwear market in Q1 2015, just inching past Adidas’s 4.6% and the 4% of shares by Asics and New Balance. Nike and its proprietary brand Jordan still maintain a stronghold on the market, accounting for 62% of sports footwear sold in the US.
Skechers’ growth is believed to be due to Americans’ preference for less expensive, casual footwear not intended for running. NPD Group analyst Matt Powell said, “Walking has been relatively dormant for a number of years, and they’ve kind of reignited it.” Running is the largest US athletic footwear category by retail sales according to SportsOneSource, but this shift in consumer behavior for “athleisure” shows that sales of fashion-focused casual shoes are driving sales more than sophisticated running shoes.
Skechers’ sales climbed 29% last year to $2.4 billion after witnessing a decrease earlier this decade.
The WSJ also reports that the rise in Skechers’ position in the market poses another challenge for Adidas, which is the world’s second-largest sportswear brand by revenue. In 2014, the Germany-based company fell behind Under Armour in combined US footwear and apparel retail sales, according to data from Sterne Agee CRT and SportScanInfo.
Adidas Q1 2015 earnings rose 8.2% due to, according to CEO Herbert Hainer, the sales of the Ultra Boost running shoe, the newly launched Tubular style, the latest ZX Flux, and the company’s collaborations with Pharrell Williams and Kanye West. Despite the increase in sales, the company still fell short to Skechers.
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