2018 Austin Diary: Focus on the Product: Some thoughts on the Under Armour Launch Party


We arrived in Austin, Texas, on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 for the 2018 running event. This is the premier show for running channel. With several hundred retailers, and a couple hundred vendors, this is the show of shows in our business channel. With all of the digital media, it is still important, especially in this channel, for humans to interact.

The show opened on Tuesday, and we would spend the next few days checking out product, meeting with retailers and putting together a solid view of the next year in this business channel.

IMG_5488.jpegThe Under Armour hovr Infinite, photo by Mike Deering/The Shoe Addicts

The first night was about meeting the UA team, and their supporters, as well as some media and curious retailers. While Under Armour has been a colossus in sports for two decades, they have battled to get into running. In 2017, they began to make inroads, and in 2018, they added to those successes. In February 2019, UA will launch five shoes lead by the Hovr Infinite. We were to learn about that shoe, and speak to Topher Gaylord, the GM of running, trail and training. Topher was smiling this evening: he knew how far UA had come, and also saw how far they still need to go. Topher gave credit to his team, and the drive that they were showing as they focused on this challenging channel of running.

The following podcast came from my experiences that night. It is a tribute to where all successful running footwear brands have tread, and where they must all go on that journey to build great product.

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