Skip to main content

Brooks Running Back to Meeting Demand After Vietnam Factory Closures

With supply chain difficulties finally improving, Brooks Running began to meet demand once again in May, keeping the company on track to grow revenue in the double digits this year.

Brooks saw revenue increase 11 percent in the second quarter, it said Thursday. The double-digit performance represented an improvement from the first quarter, when it experienced a slight sales decline, according to The NPD Group. The Berkshire Hathaway-owned brand does not release an earnings report and so did not officially comment on its Q1 sales.

Brooks CEO Jim Weber did, however, admit in April that last year’s factory closures in Vietnam “caused us to fall short of fulfilling strong market demand.” That changed in the second quarter, with the brand saying it started meeting “strong demand” in May “in the face of ongoing economic and supply chain stressors.”

The manufacturing recovery, it added, allowed Brooks to launch its Glycerin 20 franchise in June, a “key factor” in achieving 12 percent and 38 percent revenue growth in the U.S. and in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, respectively. The company also began its soft launch in China in the second quarter, focusing on digital sales. Though other sneaker brands have stumbled in the world’ most populous country lately—first because of a boycott of Western brands and more recently due to Covid lockdowns—Brooks noted the country’s sizable running market.

Citing The NPD Group and Retail Tracking Service data, Brooks claims that it held the top spot in U.S. adult performance running footwear for a second consecutive quarter in Q2, with 21 percent market share. The brand also claimed to have nabbed five of the top 25 spots in adult performance running footwear shoes in U.S. retail in the first half of the year. Its Ghost and Adrenaline lines, it noted, maintained their positions as the top two selling franchises in the U.S. market, with a combined 14 percent of sales revenue.

Related Stories

“We’ve seen great excitement over our revolutionary nitrogen-infusion technology and the launch of our Glycerin 20 franchise, and we look forward to bringing the carbon-neutral Ghost 15 to runners this November,” Weber said in a statement. “By spreading the run and its energy to an even greater number of individuals across the globe, Brooks has captured double-digit growth with more to come in the second half of this year.”

The latest Glycerin styles feature its new nitrogen-infused DNA Loft v3 midsole. The innovation allows Brooks to “control cell structures” and midsole density, “fine-tuning” the underfoot to meet different needs, preferences and environments. The nitrogen-infused technology is available in Brooks Glycerin 20 and Caldera 6 styles.

Though NPD data showed the U.S. running footwear market down 10 percent in the second quarter, Brooks said its long-term outlook remained positive and that it believed global participation will “grow coming out of the pandemic and outpace historical trends.”