NEW SHOES: Japan’s Asics is relaunching its Asics Tiger line to target the “sport lifestyle” market. Originally started in 1977, the brand was popular with athletes and sneaker fans until it was discontinued over two decades ago.
The brand is recognizable by its retro logo, and, in terms of style, falls somewhere in between the Asics performance sports brand and the casual fashion of its Onitsuka Tiger brand. A key Asics Tiger product is the Gel-Lyte III sneaker, which first hit the market in 1990 as a running shoe with a thick sole and split tongue. The shoe has been relaunched in new colors and materials.
“The company has to run several strategies to stay up to date,” said Katsuyuki Yamada of Asics’ planning and production team. “Our brand strategy [for Asics Tiger] is based on some iconic models from the early Nineties.”
The Asics Tiger brand will include a total of just under 30 models of shoes, which went on sale in Japan last week. Sales of the line have already begun in some overseas markets. The company is also planning to add clothing and accessories to the offering starting from this fall.
On Saturday, an Asics Tiger pop-up shop opened at the Parco department store in Tokyo’s Shibuya neighborhood. It will be open until March 5. Additionally, the line will be available at sports and sneaker shops worldwide. A spokeswoman for Asics said the company is targeting global sales of 10 billion yen, or $84.76 million at current exchange rates, per year.