Nike (NKE), Flex (FLEX) Enter Footwear Technology Partnership
NIKE has been actively developing new technologies to enhance its manufacturing business model for the past few years with investments in automation, modernization, sustainability, and innovative new methods of manufacturing such as Flyknit. The partnership with Flex advances this work by bringing new capabilities and expertise outside of the existing footwear industry to create future systems for making product and to catalyze innovation across NIKE’s global supply chain.
“Flex’s proven expertise in design, engineering and manufacturing in industries like automotive, medical and consumer electronics make them a perfect partner to help us revolutionize footwear manufacturing,” said Eric Sprunk, Chief Operating Officer, NIKE, Inc. “Together, the future of personalized, rapidly-delivered product that is made more efficiently and with less waste is well underway.”
NIKE is currently working with Flex at its Milpitas, Calif., innovation campus testing new methods of make, automation techniques and broad disruptive technologies. Flex will also be undertaking a product customization program near NIKE’s Memphis, Tenn., distribution center.
“NIKE is an iconic brand and innovative leader - always providing the best designs, performance and quality to consumers,” said Mike McNamara, Flex CEO. “We are thrilled to be their sketch-to-scale partner, collaborating to bring innovative supply chain and product solutions and high-quality, advanced manufacturing to NIKE and their consumers.”
“When you combine the new Advanced Product Creation Center at our world headquarters in Oregon, the product customization project in Memphis, and the innovation work at Flex’s Lab in California, we have a powerful opportunity to deliver new performance innovation to consumers through advanced, world-class manufacturing,” said Sprunk.
A phased approach to testing, developing and creating new methods of production will enable NIKE and Flex to develop an eco-system of suppliers and vendors to support long-term, sustainable manufacturing closer to major markets.