Reebok to tie up with fitness experts, gyms

Global sportswear major Reebok plans to tie up with fitness experts as it seeks to revive sales that have fallen in the last couple of years. The company also plans to expand its CrossFit chain across the country.

Somdeb Basu, brand director, Reebok India, told Financial Chronicle the move would benefit the consumers.

“We are talking to fitness enablers such as sports studios, gyms, running clubs across the country. We are also in talks with marathon experts or athletes,” added Basu. While Reebok has already tied up with hubs like Fitness First, it is yet to come up with a final list, according to Basu. The company plans to open at least two more CrossFit stores by the end of this financial year. The new marketing initiative is part of Reebok’s endeavour to position the brand in the premium segment. The company plans to open 400 new retail outlets and 100 new Reebok Fit Hubs by March 2014.

Harminder Sahni, founder and director of Wazir Advisors, said, “To recover their lost brand equity, Reebok is going back to its strategy of tying up with outside brands.”

The company has recently roped in Nargis Fakhri and John Abraham as ambassadors. The company plans to launch a campaign with Nargis Fakhri for their “Studio” category which would be packaged and designed to inspire Indian consumers to take up fitness as a lifestyle.

Apparel consultants say Reebok should be clear about their vision and strategy for premium positioning since the brand is always associated with ‘value for money’. Nabankur Gupta, founder and CEO, Nobby Brand Architects & Strategy Marketing Consultants, said, “To shift from a casual positioning Reebok needs to innovate and rope in strong personalities.”

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