9+ Best Asics Competitors and Alternatives

Based in Kobe city in Japan, ASICS is a Sportswear company that manufactures and markets clothing, footwear, and accessories.

Year Founded: 1949
Headquarters: Kobe, Hyogo, Japan

Mr. Kihachiro Onitsuka founded the company as a manufacturer of basketball footwear. His vision and zeal to be a global player made the then-company Onitsuka Shōkai one of the biggest names in the sportswear market globally.

The company changed its name several times before coming up with its current name ASICS in 1977.

Known for its high quality and durable goods, ASICS has made a dent in the market shares of all the leading brands in sportswear and equipment.

ASICS is best known for the GEL brand shoes launched in 1986 that are considered ideal for running.

They started as makers of sports accessories for basketball by the name of Onitsuka Co. Ltd. and were renamed ASICS IN 1977 with a turnover of $2.5 billion globally in FY 2021. It is currently the 7th biggest sportswear brand in the world.

Pros- Comfortable products, affordability

Cons- Average marketing strategies, product recall

Top Competitors Of Asics To Vouch For

The global sportswear market was $340 billion in 2020 and is estimated to grow to $931 billion by 2031.

The market is highly competitive and gives a severe challenge to marketers on how to grab the consumer’s attention. Here are the leading competitors of ASICS:

Nike

Year Founded: 1964 (As Blue Ribbon Sports, Named Nike In 1971)
Headquarters: Portland, Oregon, United States

With an annual turnover of $44.5 billion, Nike holds the top market share in the sportswear market. They are the biggest sponsors of sports events globally and have an estimated market capitalization of $154 billion. Nike rules the premium category segment customers of sportswear. 

Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman were the co-founders of the brand. Phil was an Oregon University student and a Track & Field team member. Bill was his coach.

Both were highly dissatisfied with the quality of running shoes available at that time and decided to come together to design and build shoes for runners.

The rest, they say, is History. The mythology of Greece inspired the name. Nike was the Greek goddess of victory. True to the title, they created a winner.

Pros- Low cost of manufacturing, Brand value

Cons- Poor labor conditions in foreign countries, sensitive to pricing

Have a look at the top Nike competitors and alternatives.

Adidas

Year Founded: 1949
Headquarters: Herzogenaurach, Germany

 Two brothers, Adi and Rudolph Dassler, founded Adidas in 1949. It is a $25 billion-dollar global giant and is second to Nike’s worldwide market share.

Adidas is the biggest brand in Europe. The name is a well-known acronym for ALL DAY I DREAM ABOUT SPORTS. The company was founded in their mother’s laundry room and was then known as the “Dassler Brothers Shoe Factory.” 

Their zeal to provide world-class footwear to athletes was recognized when the great American runner Jesse Owens used their footwear for running.

In 1954, the German football team won the World Cup wearing Adidas shoes, giving them unparalleled recognition worldwide.

Pros- Brand value, Worldwide Presence, Highly Skilled Workforce

Cons- Premium Pricing, Low control in overseas markets

Also, have a look at the top Adidas competitors and alternatives.

Puma

Year Founded: 1949
Headquarters: Herzogenaurach, Germany

Rudolph Dassler, the co-founder of Adidas, founded Puma. After a major showdown with his brother Adi, they decided to part ways and set up their ventures.

Though Puma has never been as successful as Adidas, it remains the third most prominent brand globally, with a turnover of more than $6 billion in 2022. Puma is smaller than Adidas globally, yet its rivalry and competition are known worldwide. 

 The long-running joke is that both Puma and Adidas are like two warring gangs who have created exclusive spaces in different pockets of the town to ensure that a “civil war” does not erupt. An Adidas user will not even date a Puma user; the same holds the other way. The company had a turnover of $6.81 billion in 2021.

Pros- Product diversification, Product quality, and longevity

Cons- Less advertising and branding, Weak foothold in emerging markets

Under Armour

Year Founded: 1996
Headquarters: Baltimore, United States

Although a late entrant in the sportswear market, Under Armour, has established itself as one of its leading brands, its primary focus has been the marketing and manufacturing of sports shoes, and they are considered the best and most durable shoe brand. 

Most of its business comes from North America, which has a 67% share of the company business. The company had a turnover of $5.57 billion in 2021.

Pros- Constant revenue growth, Highly innovative products

Cons- Relatively new in the market, Product Recall

New Balance

Year Founded: 1906
Headquarters: Boston, United States

The company has been around for a long time but has never really challenged the big names in the industry.

Another company focusing primarily on sports shoes, New Balance, notched up a turnover exceeding $4 billion in 2021. 

The brand remains concentrated primarily in the US, generating 33% of its turnover.

Pros- Various sub-brands, High growth as a result of clinical sponsorships

Cons- Limited market presence, limited growth owing to intense competition

Lululemon Athletica

Year Founded: 1998
Headquarters: Vancouver, Canada

The company is another late entrant to the sportswear market. They focus primarily on Yoga apparel and have made a name for themselves in the category. Their 2021 turnover was $5.8 billion.

Surprisingly, they decided to enter the Indian market only in 2021 in Bengaluru, which has 150 million people who practice yoga in one form or another. 

They have set up a tech center there and are looking to hire nearly 250 technologists by year-end. 

Pros- Innovation, Good advertising, and marketing strategies

Cons- Limited global penetration, Limited recognition

Columbia Sportswear

Year Founded: 1938
Headquarters: Oregon, United States

The company has been around longer than most leading sportswear brands. They are not well known as their neighbors Nike, also based out of the same town. Columbia is well known for its outdoor wear. 

Their hiking shoes are considered the highest quality and most durable. The company does the bulk of its business in North America. Their turnover in 2021 was $3.21 billion.

Pros- Strong legacy, Wide market presence

Cons- Not so well known, Weak advertising

Fila

Year Founded: 1911
Headquarters: Seoul, Korea

The company was initially based in Italy, making textiles. In 1973, it started making sportswear and scaled up its international business. Known primarily for its sneakers and sportswear, Fila changed ownership in 2003, and Fila Korea bought it in 2007. 

Their turnover in 2021 stands at $3.27 billion. 

Pros- well-known brand, Impressive quality of products

Cons- Huge competition, Less product diversification

Reebok

Year Founded: 1958
Headquarters: Herzogenaurach, Germany

Reebok was established in the United Kingdom at one time and had the best recall value amongst sportswear customers. Known for providing value-for-money sportswear to people. Adidas bought the company in 2005. Before this, the company reached majestic heights and was considered the next market leader after Nike. 

Business circumstances facilitated a sale to Adidas, and they decided to cash in on their brand value capitalization. Adidas retains the brand name, although it’s a limp shadow of its former self. Their revenue stands at $2.3 billion in 2021.

Pros- Wide range of products, Several brand endorsements

Cons- Numerous fake and duplicate sales, Controversies

Asics Competitors

FAQs:

Which are the three biggest sportswear brands in the world?

The top three brands in the sportswear market are Nike, Adidas, and Puma.

What is common about Adidas and Puma?

Both Adidas and Puma are based in HERZOGENAURACH, GERMANY. Rudolf Dassler was the founder of both brands.

Who bought Reebok? Are they still present in the market?

Reebok was bought by Adidas in 2005. Adidas continues to use the Reebok brand name for its market value.

What was the global annual volume of the sportswear market in 2021?

The consolidated turnover of the sportswear market in 2021 was $340 billion.

Who is the biggest sponsor of sports events in the world?

Nike is the leading money spender for sponsorships to sports events worldwide.

Who are the major players in the sportswear industry?

Asics, Under Armour, Lululemon, Columbia Sportswear, Fila, and New Balance are the leading players in the sports industry, besides the big 3; Nike, Adidas, and Puma.

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