Asics America Group has hit an earnings milestone, announcing that it has surpassed $1 billion in net sales for the first time in 2014, according to a company statement. Sales totaled $1.1 billion, an increase of 14.9 percent year-on-year. Operating profit rose 20.1 percent for the same period. This marks the third year in a row that Asics America has posted growth and profitability.
Record sales were driven by the ongoing fitness trend, according to Asics, particularly increased participation in running and jogging in both traditional and non-tradtional events.
Running looks led the company’s growth, with a rise of 11.7 percent. Sales of performance running shoes were driven by the popular GT-2000 2, GEL-Kayano 21, GEL-Nimbus 16 and GEL-Cumulus 16.
Asics also launched the Natural33 collection in 2014, expanded its Lite-Show series and its kids’ collection, the latter including shoes for toddlers for the first time.
President and CEO Kevin Wuff said: “I couldn’t be prouder of the phenomenal sales growth achieved by the Asics America Group in 2014. We continue to lead the way in performance running footwear, gain substantial traction in apparel and in newer categories such as training, volleyball and tennis, and are already on pace for a strong 2015. The running industry is growing and transforming in terms of the way people are engaging with the sport, and runners and fitness enthusiasts alike continue to choose Asics because they trust the performance products.”
Asics also put increased emphasis on innovation last year, introducing two new running technologies, the FluidFit Upper and the FluidRide Midsole 2.0. The iconic GEL-LYTE III, celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2015, was another lifestyle product that contributed to growth in the sports-lifestyle category, along with the Onitsuka Tiger. The category was up 48 percent over the prior year.
The training and volleyball categories also saw high double-digit growth last year.
Asics America expanded its retail presence in 2014 as well, opening 11 new stores, including a flagship at Times Square in New York City. The company plans to open 10 more stores this year.