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New Runners Kick Brooks’ Revenue Into High Gear

Gains in new runners helped drive a 49 percent year-over-year increase in global revenue at Brooks Running in the third quarter, the company reported Wednesday. Looking at 2020 as a whole, the running shoe-focused firm said it expects to see 27 percent growth overall.

Brooks said its Run-Sight Lab research team identified a mindset shift among pandemic runners, with many choosing to run for the mental benefits rather than a fitness, distance or event-related goal.

“We believe in the positive power the run can create in someone’s day and its additive benefits over time,” Jim Weber, CEO at Brooks Running, said in a statement. “It is also an effective antidote in troubling times, and we’ve seen that prove true as running participation increased since March.”

Brooks gained 1.6 million runners through October of this year, according to data from the company, a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary that sells performance footwear, apparel, run bras and accessories.

Brooks’ digital sales, both through and retail partners, grew from less than 35 percent of sales in 2019 to a peak of 82 percent in April. That number has since stabilized at 42 percent of sales, still seven points above pre-Covid levels.

During the past 10 months, the Seattle-based company has introduced new footwear styles, including the Hyperion Tempo and Hyperion Elite training and racing shoes and the Catamount trail shoe. Outside of footwear, the brand launched its Dare Run Bra collection, as well as the safety-conscious Run Visible collection to help runners be seen in low- and no-light conditions. Existing franchise styles continued to gain traction with the Ghost and Adrenaline GTS models up 25  and 17 percent year over year, respectively.