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Foot Locker on hunt for footwear innovators


Foot Locker is looking to the future of the footwear industry with a new partnership designed to drive innovation.

The retailer is collaborating with Pensole Footwear Design Academy on a class that will help design the new ASICS Tiger this summer.

"Delivering fresh, new athletic footwear innovation to our customers is at the core of everything we do at Foot Locker," said Stacy Cunningham, EVP of marketing for Foot Locker. "We are thrilled about our partnership with Pensole, and having ASICS on board will certainly make the first competition a memorable one, as we invest in the next generation of trendsetters and fashion-forward thinkers."

Foot Locker's first "Fueling the Future of Footwear" course is set to take place from July 13 through July 31. The curriculum for the three-week, class-based competition is built upon Foot Locker's commitment to delivering the freshest, athletic-inspired footwear and Pensole's "learn by doing" footwear design process. The brands will work together to select 18 students to comprise six teams with skill sets across design, engineering/materials and business to create a new collection for ASICS Tiger.

The competition winners will be chosen by a mix of Foot Locker, ASICS and industry executives, alongside the professor of the course, and Pensole founder, D'Wayne Edwards – acting as master curators and giving the emblematic Foot Locker "Approved" seal to the winning design. The chosen design will be sold at select Foot Locker locations and the winning team will receive a $12,000 scholarship.

"The future of the footwear industry is reliant upon hands-on learning, and the training of tomorrow's design and business leaders," said Pensole founder D'Wayne Edwards. "With the partnership of Foot Locker, Pensole makes it possible for those students to hone their craft and prepare themselves for their professional careers."

"ASICS is excited to be an integral part of this fantastic new collaboration focused on the future of footwear design," said Shannon Scott, senior director of brand marketing for ASICS America Corporation. "We can't wait to see the creativity and fresh interpretation the students bring to this first project."

Applications for consideration into the program should be submitted no later than May 24 in order to be eligible for consideration.

Foot Locker is part of Foot Locker, Inc., a specialty athletic retailer that operates approximately 3,500 stores in 23 countries in North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.

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