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Nike, Finish Line Co-Brand Stores

There's an interesting new concept to keep an eye on. Nike is teaming up with Finish Line on shoe stores targeting runners and athletes in training. Reuters has a profile of the concept. It sounds similar to another expanding concept, The Running Company. The latter has been around for years as a boutique shop catering to runners in New Jersey. Now its looking to expand and open stores in a broader region.

Are there more of these types of specialty shoe shops on the way? We'll see. Anyway, here's an excerpt from the Reuters piece.

A new co-branded store by Nike Inc and Finish Line, the No. 2 U.S. athletic shoe retailer, opens on Wednesday, aimed at gaining a foothold in the niche market of runners and athletes in training.

For Nike, the world's largest maker of athletic shoes and clothing, the venture is the second in a series of co-branded "concept" stores designed to raise its profile among target groups while helping to boost sales through its retail chain customers.

"This is another way we look at expanding the marketplace, going deeper into the consumer types as opposed to trying to be a little bit of everything to everyone and in the end not being enough of anything for anybody," Nike Brand President Charlie Denson told Reuters before a tour of the 4,500-square foot store outside Phoenix on Tuesday.

The store, Finish Line Ltd, is located in an upscale mall and mainly targets high-school athletes aged around 17, with products from various manufacturers. Nike helped pay for its design and fixtures. Finish Line will operate it.

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