New Balance in £2m sales drive

Sportswear brand New Balance is to double its advertising spend in Europe to £2m in a determined effort to increase sales across the UK, France, Germany and Italy. The move signals a change in strategy for the brand, which has previously focused on event sponsorship and specialist magazines.

New Balance has announced that it is aiming for a five-fold increase in its European business over the next five years. It is also investing £1m in product development and is seeking up to 25 new marketers and product design specialists to support its plans.

It has appointed London-based brand consultancy Fresh to create a brand campaign for New Balance. There will be some advertising this year, but the main part of the activity, which will include a print and outdoor campaign, will break next year. In the past, New Balance has ignored traditional marketing techniques such as celebrity endorsement to focus on grassroots marketing.

New Balance general manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa Alistair Cameron says that the brand is keen to reinforce its position as the dominant brand in running and build on its position in the walking market. But he adds that New Balance is also relaunching its heritage shoe collections as lifestyle products.

New Balance will receive the Queen’s Award for Enterprise on July 9 as a reward for its commitment to manufacturing in the UK. The award allows it to use the phrase “Made in Britain” on its products.

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