Following up on its successful collaboration with “Sesame Street,” Boston-based New Balance has partnered with licensing and syndication firm United Media to create a line of co-branded children’s sneakers based on the popular comic strip “Peanuts,” penned by the late Charles M. Schulz.
“[This is] an exciting footwear partnership that will enable us to introduce authentic and distinctive kids’ shoes to the marketplace,” said Sanna Makela, kids’ product manager for New Balance. “New Balance and Peanuts share [many of the same] brand qualities and core values, including strong brand history and heritage.”
Slated to launch in stores in October, the line will initially feature three versions of New Balance’s heritage running shoe, the 574, that bring to life three of “Peanuts’” most popular stories: “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown;” “A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving;” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” All three sneaker styles will be available in infant, preschool and grade-school sizes. Retail prices will range from $38 to $60.
The shoes feature EVA cushioning in the midsole and heel, as well as a rubber outsole for support and durability. “Peanuts”-branded detail elements include colorful soft tongue linings and character embossings and embroideries. Special packaging and point-of-purchase displays will highlight the product at retail.
The line is the first of a series of New Balance and “Peanuts” co-branded collections that will be rolled out in 2009 and 2010.