Superfeet Worldwide Inc. has launched what it says is the world’s first mass customization footwear facility, Flowbuilt Manufacturing, in Ferndale, Wash.
With the opening of Flowbuilt, brands will have access to solutions for the evolving consumer market, where speed and innovation rule, Superfeet said.
After perfecting the technology and processes to design individualized insoles and footwear, the team at Superfeet realized there wasn’t a facility to take these products from vision to reality, so they built it. The new facility has prototyping materials, 3-D printers and machines with the flexibility to manufacture a single custom pair of shoes, or thousands.
With more than four decades of biomechanical experience, Superfeet’s mission is to revolutionize the way people experience footwear. With a prototype lab and 3-D printing center, Flowbuilt can make lasts and molds in a fraction of the typical time, which means its partners can get to market faster than they may have before. The facility allows for rapid prototyping and sampling, development, plus design and build services for inline footwear.
Thanks to what it also says is the only commercially available multi-section-injection (MSI) machine in the U.S, Flowbuilt customers’ finished product can have personalized midsole responsiveness based on an individual’s biometric data collected through FitStation powered by HP, a technology not previously available in the U.S.
“As evidenced in our own experience bringing technologies like FitStation and ME3D products to market, we set out to create a clear path for brands to design and deliver their future before anyone else can,” Chuck Sanson, director of business development at Flowbuilt, said. “As their first partner, Superfeet is excited to push the capabilities of Flowbuilt and showcase the advanced manufacturing technologies that can be found right here in the USA.”
Flowbuilt announced Brooks Running Company as its first performance footwear partner during the 2017 The Running Event trade show in Austin, Tex. Brooks plans to leverage Flowbuilt’s state-of-the-art multi-section injection technology to deliver the most personalized performance running shoe on the market in the coming months.
“To date, your choices have been very limited when it came to finding the best resources to bring footwear from ideation to fruition in a very quick timeframe, even more so if you wanted to do so with elements of customization,” Eric Hayes, chief marketing officer at Superfeet, said. “With Flowbuilt, our partners can utilize an end-to-end connected platform, in one location, in the U.S. We’ve created the new standard for footwear manufacturing and are setting up our partners for success by solving for problems that have yet to be discovered.”