Asics is latest footwear company vying for space in Boston

US arm of Japanese company plans to set up a product design and creation studio near South Station

The Boston Globe | By Kathleen Conti
March 29, 2017

Another premier athletic shoe company is making the trek to Boston.

The US arm of Japan-based apparel and shoemaker Asics is opening a product creation and design studio near South Station. Asics’ initial presence will run to about 50 people in a 25,000-square-foot office space.

With its new space, the shoemaker, a favorite among serious runners, will be competing against other major brands locating in Boston — including New Balance, Converse, and Reebok — for talented innovators as it focuses on casual runners and even nonathletes.

“Since I’m a feisty competitor myself, I do believe we need to go nose-to-nose and toe-to-toe with our competition, so sometimes you just have to be where the battle is,” said Asics America chief executive Gene McCarthy. “So we’re going to be looking to add talent to our already very rich culture, and just get an additional bounce in our step by being on the East Coast.”

About 25 of the employees will transfer to Boston from the US company’s headquarters in Irvine, Calif., and global headquarters in Kobe, Japan, while another 25 will be new hires. So far, “there is no shortage of resumes that are coming through,” said McCarthy, who previously worked for Reebok and Timberland in New Hampshire.

The company declined to say where the new space is located, citing ongoing lease negotiations

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