Concept One will distribute New Balance accessories – WWD
Concept One Accessories, extending its series of agreements signed over the past year, has become the exclusive distributor of New Balance accessories in the United States
The deal covers New Balance-branded bags and luggage, including sports backpacks, running belts and duffel bags, as well as lifestyle bags for men, women and children. The line features the signature NB logo and trademark elements of their footwear such as suede detailing and neutral color palettes.
“We’ve had our eye on the New Balance brand for several years now,” said Sam Hafif, Managing Director of Concept One Accessories. “The brand is enjoying incredible momentum thanks to its powerful marketing campaigns and high-end collaborations. It has quickly become the most ambitious of the major sports brands in our market.”
Concept One’s deal was signed with Grown Up Licenses, a Hong Kong-based developer and manufacturer of bags, luggage, containers and accessories, which produces New Balance accessories in conjunction with New Balance’s design teams. Libra, while Concept One handle the broadcast. Grown Up is licensed by brands such as Caterpillar, Lego and Ellehammer, as well as New Balance, and supplies several industries ranging from medical and sports to construction and electronics.
New Balance accessories will be available to shoppers starting next July, in time for the back-to-school season. So far, Urban Outfitters has committed to selling the products. Additionally, Concept One is in talks with Dick’s Sporting Goods as the company targets key New Balance retail accounts.
New York-based Concept One designs and produces a line of licensed cold weather accessories, handbags, backpacks and luggage, and also has offices in Mexico and China as well as a partnership in Canada and a design studio in London.
Hafif said 2021 marked the busiest year for his company in its 23-year history. During the second half of 2021, FUBU signed with Concept One to produce a range of accessories and distribute the products in physical and online stores. FUBU bags, backpacks, cold weather gear, as well as headgear and other accessories are part of the deal.
Concept One also recently signed deals with Brooks Brothers; Smoke Rise, a men’s streetwear brand and private label supplier that is part of New World Creation Inc., a Korean American company; and designer Christian Siriano. Generally, Concept One is involved in license agreements, more so than in distribution agreements.
New Balance, which employs more than 7,000 associates worldwide, is based in Boston and sells footwear, apparel and accessories; owns and operates four factories in New England and one in Flimby, UK, and reported 2020 global sales of $3.3 billion.