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Background on New Balance The story of New Balance begins at the dawn of the 20th century in Boston, Massachusetts

when William J. Riley, a 33-year-old English immigrant, committed himself to helping people with problem feet by making arch .supports and prescription footwear to improve shoe fit In 1934, Mr. Riley went into partnership with his leading salesman, Arthur Hall, who was highly successful selling arch supports to "policemen and ".other folks who were on their feet all day In 1954, Arthur Hall sold the business to his daughter and son-in-law, Eleanor and Paul Kidd. Arch supports and prescription footwear remained the cornerstone of their business until 1961 when they manufactured The Trackster, the world's first performance running shoe made with a ripple sole and available in multiple widths. The Trackster soon became the shoe .of choice for college running coaches and YMCA fitness directors During the 1960s, New Balance's reputation for manufacturing innovative performance footwear available in multiple widths grew through word of .mouth and grassroots promotions When Jim Davis bought the company from the Kidds on the day of the Boston Marathon in 1972, he committed himself to uphold the company's .founding values of fit, performance, and manufacturing When Anne Davis began her journey with New Balance in 1978, her focus became building a superior culture for NB associates and those who do business with the company around the globe. (

(http://www.newbalance.co.za/nbstory.html

Together, Anne and Jim lead New Balance with fidelity on its mission to become the world's leading manufacturer of high performance footwear and .apparel New balance International started from humble beginnings in the early 1900s in the United States of America, When William J.R riley committed himself to helping people with problem feet by making arch-supports and prescription foot wear to improve the fit of their shoes(2). (In 1954 Eleanor and Paul Kidd bought the company and later sold it in 1972 to Jim Davis would continue to uphold the company's founding values of fit ,performance and manufacturing .( 3) By 2006 ,the company had its headquarters in Massachusetts, USA, and 12 wholly-owned international subsidiaries . with the aid of licensees and affiliates ,new balance products were sold in 120 .countries

Since the 1990s in particular ,new balance International had shown substantial growth .Worldwide sales had increased from $210 million in 1991 to $1.54 billion in 2005.,and New Balance laid claim to being the .(fourth largest athletic footwear and apparel company in the world(4

New Balance SA-Forward

In 1976, Futura Footwear ,based in Pinetown ,Durban, obtained a license to distribute New Balance footwear in South Africa ,but under this agreement New balance did not reach its full potential . In 1995 ,for example ,just 0.5% 0f comrades marathon (5)runners ran the race in New Balance shoes ,putting the brand at the bottom of the list of about 15 others worn in the same race(6) .Things took a turn for the better in 1999,however ,when Davis visited South Africa and realized that, with its strong sporting culture ,the country warranted a New Balance subsidiary rather than simply (a licensee.(7 In January 2000, New Balance USA commissioned one of its employees, John O,Neil,who had a good reputation for starting up subsidiaries, to set up an office in Cape Town. Van Rooyen joined the company in February, as a general manager, after being headhunted from Nike-a major competitor of New Balance-where he had held the position of regional sales director. In the first year, the team consisted of van Rooyen and seven other employees. By 2006 this number had grown to 45,including agents ,and New Balance SA had branched out to Johanesburg ,Durban,Durban and Port (Elizabeth.(8

A Sports Brand Built On Family Values? If the Shoe Fits


Penny Haw 12 June 2006 Johannesburg BEFORE sunrise this Friday, about 28000 bare knees will knock aboutthe City Hall in Durban, from whence they will run, jog, walk, shuffle and even crawl almost 87km to The Oval in Pietermaritzburg. But for some the Comrades Marathon is not about fitness, fortitude or foolishness. It is more about footwear, and who is wearing what. For decades, marketers of running shoes have used the Comrades Shoe Count as the number one gauge to measure their success in SA. ( http://allafrica.com/stories/200606120083.html)

A WORD FROM GARY VAN ROOYEN

New Balance South Africa has really come of age over the past 10 years. It has been the most exciting ride ever, putting together a team that is recognised and respected .throughout the industry As we go forward, we will continue to expand our range of footwear and apparel to meet the demands of the South African market and ensure that we offer the best .possible customer service to enhance this product offering (http://www.newbalance.co.za/nbstory.html )