Puma might be smaller than other leading sportswear brands.

But the German company is undoubtedly on the rise.

“I don’t really see myself as having to compete against Nike and Adidas,” Puma CEO Bjørn Gulden told Business Insider inside of the brand new Manhattan flagship store on Fifth Avenue.

Admittedly, Puma rakes in less than its competitors annually but its growth is something that increasingly cannot be ignored.

Read more: We visited Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour to see which store does athletic-wear the best — the winner shocked us

“The brand is much smaller than the big names but definitely getting some traction,” VP and senior industry advisor for NPD Group Matt Powell told Footwear News earlier in August.

Executives say that the growth comes from different places.

“We’re getting better at everything that we do,” Puma’s North America President Bob Philion said, citing advancements in everything from product to marketing.

Puma re-entered the basketball sector last year to great success and plans to continue capitalizing on that market in North America. Additionally, the growing trend toward the fusion of sport and lifestyle apparel plays nicely into Puma’s general offerings.

“We’re playing in a really good space that is growing,” Philion said.

“This store is going to make us a better company,” said Puma North America’s President Bob Philian.
Shoshy Ciment/Business Insider

Both Philion and Gulden say that the opening of the brand’s Manhattan flagship will further represent the company’s commitment to the North American market. The store will also serve as a testing ground for what works and what doesn’t, featuring three separate interactive experiences like a simulator to test out shoes on a virtual soccer pitch.

With 18,000 square-feet spanning two floors, executives hope the flagship makes a favorable impression on the consumer in America.

“Let’s be honest,” Philian said. “The size of the prize is significant here.”

We visited the flagship right before it opened to the public and saw why Puma has been riding this wave of success.



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