Adidas looks to revolutionise U.S. sneaker production
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Adidas looks to revolutionise U.S. sneaker production

Global sneaker maker and athleisure brand Adidas is looking to shake up the U.S. sneaker space, bringing new levels of speed, personalization and innovation to market. The company is hoping to do this through a new robotic Speedfactory outside of Atlanta, Georgia. According to the company, this automated facility will allow for the production of products at triple speed, letting it bring new styles to market much faster than before.

Adidas’ share price is on a roll so far this year, rising 24%

graph 0405 adidas

SOURCE: Yahoo Finance

The automated process uses data from athletes to optimise performance more quickly than has previously been possible. Taken alongside the fact that all human error has been eliminated from the process, and it means that Adidas’s shoes will be better engineered than ever before. Since a variety of templates will be used in the construction of these new pieces, there will also be uniformity across the brand.

However, the company’s customers shouldn’t worry about generic shoes unsuited to their own needs. Rather, under the AM4 program (Adidas Made For), the brand will take this powerful automated process and apply it locally. That might, for example, mean sneakers perfectly designed for New York City, which are built to let wearers move quickly through densely populated urban environments. Speaking about these very shoes, senior designer Zachary Coonrod from the Adidas Futures team explained:

"Compared to the shoes that were released for London and Paris, there’s an extra eyelet: five on either side, as opposed to four. That lets you put a little more adjustment into the forefoot. You can cinch around the smaller bones that connect your toes to your feet, which makes you a little more stable when you’re up on your toes running in the city."

This capability is increased by the company’s new Speedfactory: it’s fully automated – you put in the data, it gives you the shoes. That means styles that are both more uniform and more personalized than ever before. And that could be a big win for Adidas and sneaker enthusiasts alike.

With its share price already on a tear this year, will Adidas’ speed factory give it the boost needed to revolutionise the U.S. footwear market for good?


Dominion holds Adidas in its Global Trends Luxury Fund.

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