Victory Lap

By Larry Barrett  |  Posted 2003-11-01 Print this article Print

New Balance had nearly faded into irrelevance six years ago. Then, accurately forecasting demand for its shoes became a sport for the entire company and its retailing partners. Now it's making up ground quickly, in its footrace with Nike.

?"> Victory Lap?

New Balance is now rolling the system out overseas. Holland took the locked-down forecasting system to South Africa five months ago. There are only six sales reps there, all English-speaking and computer-literate. Another 20 countries, mostly in Europe, came into the fold in September.

New Balance hopes this will lead to the kind of market-share gains globally that the company has already achieved in North America.

"Everybody has some sort of forecasting here in North America," Ed Haddad, the company's vice president of international operations, says. "But when you go overseas, except for maybe Adidas in Europe, it's like stepping off a cliff."

Is Nike watching what Teresa Holland is up to now? You bet.

Senior Writer
Larry, of San Carlos, Calif., was a senior writer and editor at CNet, writing analysis, breaking news and opinion stories. He was technology reporter at the San Jose Business Journal from 1996-1997. He graduated with a B.A. from San Jose State University where he was also executive editor of the daily student newspaper.

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