Three decades after the original New Balance 990 graced running shoe shelves and kick-started the iconic 99X series, the Boston-based brand is bringing it back in an all new way. NB introduces the 2012 990, the anticipated follow-up to the 993. The successive numbering system is gone (you know you expected a 994). Instead, the 990 tag will remain while the model itself is updated. Familiar line hallmarks like grey suede, Abzorb cushioning, NDurance long-wearing outsoles, and Made In The USA craftsmanship carry over from previous editions.
Here’s the details on the new 990, with pics, courtesy New Balance…
BOSTON – Global athletic leader New Balance is proud to announce the launch of the New Balance 990, an iconic style that is the latest edition of one of the longest-running athletic shoe series in the industry. The 990, an updated version of the original 990 that debuted 30 years ago in 1982, is supported by a robust, multi-platform marketing campaign that includes print, television and digital advertising, online videos and in-store materials.
“The 990 truly showcases our American shoemaking craftsmanship at its finest,” says Eric Vassall, senior product manager at New Balance. “The 990 continues to provide the perfect blend of cushioning and stability for runners and is also the ideal balance of old-school style and modern design for our most discerning lifestyle consumers.”
Launching today on newbalance.com/990, New Balance offers videos that tell the story of the brand’s New England craftsmanship by highlighting associates who manufacture the shoes. The short videos highlight seven New Balance craftspeople from the company’s Norridgewock, Maine factory who are critical to creating the 990; the videos emphasize their connection to the product and their passion for the shoe. The videos also showcase the company’s distinctive commitment to providing American jobs through manufacturing athletic shoes in the US, and highlight how the 990 creates more than 2,000 total domestic manufacturing and administrative jobs across 18 companies, including a Pennsylvania location that supplies New Balance with the mesh used in the 990.
In addition, a :25 TV spot and print advertisements will be seen in local markets through key retailers as well as a national online campaign on Federated Media, Largetail and StumbleUpon networks. In-store point-of-sale marketing highlights the theme “Craftsmanship Redefined” and includes a view master that enables consumers to see the progression of the 990 series from the original 990 in 1982 through to the new 990 in 2012.
Also part of the 990 launch, New Balance stores nationwide are hosting a promotion throughout the month of April where for each consumer who donates $10 with their purchase, the company will send a pair of footwear that is made or assembled in America to an active duty service member through the USO. The maximum donation of footwear will be 5,000 pairs. Any donation beyond 5,000 pairs will be donated to the USO as cash. New Balance currently has 150 New Balance stores that are independently-owned and operated in North America and four corporately-owned stores in the United States.
The updated 2012 990 is a half an ounce lighter than the previous model and focuses on the brand’s design mantra of “less is more” with less layering through the eye row and saddle of the upper to deliver a better performance fit. A fully blown rubber forefoot provides a comfortable underfoot feel while modern design lines and additional color options create a silhouette that appeals to a broad range of consumers. The 990 is available for men and women with a suggested retail price of $149.95.
New Balance holds the distinction as the only company that still manufactures athletic shoes in the U.S. New Balance proudly relies on its more than 1,300 manufacturing associates at five New England factories to produce a quarter of the brand’s U.S. footwear worn by consumers each year.
Many New Balance shoes are produced by the company’s highly skilled workforce using U.S. and imported materials. When possible, New Balance obtains materials from domestic suppliers. At times, due to availability, economic or quality reasons, there is a need to import components from foreign sources. Where the domestic value is at least 70%, New Balance has labeled the shoe “Made in USA.”
via New Balance