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The numbers are tiny for a company that makes some 300m pairs of sports shoes each year. Yet Adidas is convinced the Speedfactory will help it to transform the way trainers are created. The techniques it picks up from the project can then be rolled out to other new factories as well as to existing ones, including in Asia—where demand for sports and casual wear is rising along with consumer wealth.
Currently, trainers are made mostly by hand in giant factories, often in Asian countries, with people assembling components or shaping, bonding and sewing materials.Nike Air Huarache Womens Rising prosperity in the region means the cost of manual work outsourced to the region is rising. Labour shortages Nike Air Max 2016 Mujer loom. Certain jobs require craft skills which are becoming rarer; many people now have the wherewithal to avoid tasks that can be dirty or monotonous.
Adidas’s motivation for its Speedfactories, however, goes well beyond labour cost. People want fashionable shoes immediately, but the supply chain struggles to keep up. “The way our business operates is probably the opposite of what consumers desire,” says Gerd Manz, the company’s head of technology innovation.
From the first sketch of a completely new pair of trainers to making and testing prototypes, ordering materials, sending samples back and forth, retooling a factory, working up production and eventually shipping the finished goods to the shops can take the industry Nike Air Max Thea Womens as long as 18 months. Yet some three-quarters of new trainers are now on sale for less than a year. An order to Nike Internationalist Mujer replenish an existing, in-demand design—the latest edition of the NMD R1, say, a popular trainer in 2015-16—can take two or three months to reach the shelves, unless the shoes travel not in a shipping container but at huge cost in the hold of an aircraft.
Adidas claims its new production system is extremely fast and highly flexible. The details are being kept secret for now. What is known, however, is that instead of ordering components that will be assembled into a new pair of trainers, the Speedfactory will instead make most of the parts itself from raw materials, such as plastics, fibres and other basic Nike Air Zoom Mariah Flyknit Racer Femme substances.
In such a competitive and trend-driven market, one thing is certain: Adidas’s arch-rival Nike will not Nike Air Force 1 Femme just sit on the touchline. The American company faces similar cost increases in Asia and is equally keen to shorten the Nike Cortez Damen time it takes to get new products to market.
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