Brooks Running finished 2023 with record revenue of $1.2 billion, up 5 percent year-over-year (YoY), and a record 20 million-plus units sold. Despite the mid-single-digit gain for the year, Brooks reported its compound annual growth rate (CAGR) exceeded 14 percent since 2018.

In North America, revenue reportedly increased 7 percent YoY, reaching $1 billion in the region for the first time. Brooks said it executed its multi-channel business strategy as it right-sized inventory, invested in key markets and delivered performance products across regions to drive the brand’s success in 2023.

Brooks said it has maintained the #1 spot in the adult performance running footwear market at U.S. retail from quarter to quarter in 2023, with 21 percent market share for the year when measuring U.S. dollar sales, according to data from Circana. The company said the Brooks Ghost and the Adrenaline GTS shoes also remained the top two adult performance running styles at U.S. retail, commanding more than 12 percent share combined in 2023, based on the Circana data. Additionally, according to its yearly global trend report, the Brooks Ghost was said to be among the top running styles on the fitness tracking app Strava.

“There has never been a more exciting time to be in run, especially for a brand as focused on it as Brooks. U.S. retail is healthy across channels and participation continues to grow worldwide as more people discover the physical, mental and social benefits of putting one foot in front of the other,” said Jim Weber, CEO of Brooks Running. “Brooks is poised to compete at its best this year as we welcome additional runners, walkers, hikers, and more to experience our products and brand.”

Innovation Fuels Growth
The company said the performance running category remained strong in 2023 as one of the few footwear categories to see growth in the U.S., with running shoes outperforming the overall footwear market, according to Circana data. 

The premium adult performance running footwear category ($75 and above) grew 15 percent YoY in the U.S., driven in part by continued growth in participation.

“Brooks entered 2024 with strong fourth-quarter momentum, including 24 percent global revenue growth in December,” the company wrote in a media statement. “In September, Brooks launched the all-new Ghost Max, expanding on the brand’s highly successful Ghost franchise by adding high-stack cushioning and GlideRoll rocker technology to offer more protection and assisted transition through the gait cycle. The Ghost Max represented the best retail adoption of a new style in Brooks’ history, selling more than half a million pairs in the first three months.”

According to Upper Quadrant Run Specialty market data, Brooks said this contributed to the brand’s 2 percent to 3 percent footwear retail market share gain from September to November. The company said the Ghost Max took the #6 spot overall in top U.S. specialty footwear styles in the fourth quarter.

“This year, the brand will build on demand with a steady pipeline of product launches and innovations across all core footwear offerings for the first time since 2020, including more than ten new launches and updates to favorite franchises within cushion, speed and trail. The statement continued that Brooks will leverage new styles, fits, support options, and colorways as it expands brand engagement to reach more runners, fitness enthusiasts, and walkers seeking performance product.

Global Business
Brooks said it saw growth across regions through its multi-channel strategy with effective demand creation, leading to continued success in the U.S. and reaching new milestones in key international markets.

  • U.S. revenue in wholesale footwear grew 5 percent, including 11 percent in the specialty category.
  • Europe growth outpaced adult performance running footwear retail sales in regional markets.
    • Brooks’ sales grew 14 percent in Germany in Q4.
    • Brand sales in France grew 15 percent for the year.
  • In China, the company plans to open retail stores in 2024 to engage runners in that market further.
    • Brooks’ direct-to-consumer jumped 194 percent in China last year.

Brooks DTC e-commerce channels reportedly grew 24 percent in global revenue YoY, including record-breaking sales from Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday, up 22 percent in North America versus 2022. Brooks said it grew its digital Brooks Run Club loyalty program to more than 500,000 members by year-end, up 85 percent YOY, through exclusive promotions and reward games.

“Our multichannel operational execution and runner-first approach helped us navigate headwinds created by supply chain disruptions in 2022 as well as economic uncertainty in Europe,” said Dan Sheridan, president and COO of Brooks Running. “We’re energized by our opportunity to further execute our strategy and double down on key investments to support our business, customers, and the global running community.”

Image courtesy Brooks Running/Ghost Max