New Balance Expands Maine Manufacturing Facility With $65 Million Investment

Responding to the demand for its U.S. Made footwear, New Balance is expanding its manufacturing facility located in Skowhegan, Maine, with plans to double production capacity and add more than 200 new jobs to the center.

The sneaker company said in a Tuesday presentation with Skowhegan’s Board of Selectman, which was shared with FN, that it plans to invest $65 million on construction and capital equipment to add 120,000 additional square feet to the existing mill building and site, which currently employs 250 people. New Balance also plans to renovate 20,000 existing square feet as well and will provide additional parking and support to the center as needed.

The company is targeting a late August move-in date, with plans for the project to be completed at the end of 2024. Current operations will continue during construction.

The expansion comes as New Balance sees an uptick in demand for its U.S. Made footwear, which has been produced in part by Skowhegan associates for more than 40 years. (New Balance purchased the Skowhegan facility in 1981.)

Domestic manufacturing has always been core to New Balance’s business, even as other footwear brands diversify production overseas. As the largest athletic footwear maker with factories in the U.S., New Balance previously told FN it largely managed to avoid global supply chain disruptions over the last two years, thanks to its domestic capabilities. The company continues to invest in its Made in USA division, which is now overseen by buzzy creative director Teddy Santis of Aimé Leon Dore.

In late March, New Balance opened a new 80,000-square-foot factory in Methuen, Mass., marking its fifth U.S. footwear factory. The building underwent a $20 million renovation and now employs over 90 people, tasked with producing the brand’s popular Made 990v5 running shoes.

Earlier this week, the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) said it would honor New Balance Athletics Inc. as Company of the Year at the 2023 American Image Awards Gala on Tuesday, April 25 at The Plaza Hotel in New York City. According to the AAFA, New Balance is recognized for its values-led culture and long-standing commitment to domestic manufacturing, with five owned factories in New England and one in Flimby, U.K. New Balance president and CEO Joe Preston will accept the award.

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