From Amazon Prime Day to political posturing against Vietnam (and a chaotic sneaker collab drop in the mix, as well), the week had plenty of things to get consumers buzzing. For starters, the e-tail giant again held its Black Friday in July sale that resulted in 175 million items being sold in a 48-hour window. The now-annual event also led to other retailers getting in on the consumer excitement, leading to a solid summer sales day for many businesses. Conversely, it wasn’t good news for Adidas and Arizona Iced Tea, which partnered on a sneaker drop. The extremely limited-edition collaboration had so much public interest that the local police stepped in to shut down the event.
In FN’s recently launched feature, editors curate five of the week’s most-compelling stories that you need to read.
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Exclusive sneaker collaborations and buzzy drops have had a storied past. On one hand, many devoted sneaker lovers will say that snagging an ultra-limited release is a critical part of what fuels their passion for athletic footwear. On the other, drops that have resulted in crowd control challenges and violent physical exchanges between sneaker enthusiasts have compelled activists to call out brands for forcing the hype. The debate got some renewed interest this week when Adidas Originals and Arizona Iced Tea attempted to host a pop-up in New York to debut their collaborative sneaker — priced for only 99 cents, to mimic the cost of the popular beverage. The event drew massive crowds that reportedly turned violent and led local authorities to shut it down before it even started.
Amazon Prime Day hit gold again for the e-com giant, which sold 175 million items during the 48-hour period. That total bested its sales for the past Black Friday and Cyber Monday combined. Amazon wasn’t the only one benefiting from “Black Friday in July,” as others held competing sales. The result: online retailers saw sales increase 64% on July 15 and 72% on July 16 compared to average days.
First it was China. Next it could be Vietnam. President Donald Trump called the country “almost the single worst abuser” in terms of international trade — and that has industry players wondering if that’s pre-emptive speak. As tit-for-tat trade talks continue with China, the footwear industry’s manufacturing migration marches on. Vietnam was the second largest exporter of shoes to the U.S. in 2018.
As the weight of the average human is ballooning, so, too, is participation in sports activities around the world. In a new column, FN dives deep into data around the people paradox. Key findings: the global sports market will hit $626.8 billion by 2023, the U.S. accounted for 32.5% of that market last year and the running segment took off in seven of 10 countries.
They’re not your elite athletes or household names. Though some of them are serious speedsters, most are just everyday plodders and weekend warriors — and they’re super influential. Brands such as Under Armour are partnering with groups like Harlem Run to create communities through homegrown marketing and win new customers en route.