China among first markets where Lululemon debuts women's footwear

Date: 10 Mar 2022

China is among the first markets where athleisure brand Lululemon debuts its footwear category, the company said on Mar 9.

The Canadian company known for its leggings and yoga pants announced the introduction of a running shoe for women known as Blissfeel, signaling its first-ever foray into footwear.

The sneaker will become available to customers on March 23 online and in select stores including those on the Chinese mainland, in addition to its home turf of North America and the United Kingdom, the company said in a press release.

The Blissfeel series comes in 10 colors and carries a price tag of 1,180 yuan ($186). Chinese customers can virtually try the shoes on through an augmented reality function on the brand's official WeChat store.

Pre-orders in China are also available from both online channels and offline shops.

The company also looks to add three other styles, including two cross-training sneakers, a train shoe, and a slide in the coming months. The current portfolio targets women customers only.

"Footwear is the natural next step for us to expand and apply our long history of innovation in fit, feel and performance, and it represents an exciting moment for our brand," said company CEO Calvin McDonald in the release.

"We are entering the footwear category the same way we built our apparel business—with products designed to solve unmet needs, made for women first," he added.

The company said a separate footwear line for men will debut next year.

Bucking the gloomy retail picture overshadowed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Lululemon enjoyed exponential growth, as many opted for more comfortable outfits while working from home.

Lululemon's net revenue in the third quarter of 2021 climbed 30 percent to $1.5 billion. International markets reported 40 percent year-on-year growth. The company currently has 71 stores on the Chinese mainland.

Source: China Daily

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