Finance

350: How Joe Foster of Reebok Raced His Brand In Front Of The Competition

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Joe Foster, Reebok


Coming from a long line of shoemakers, it seemed only natural that Joe Foster follow in his family’s footsteps, but instead Foster decided to push his horizons even further and create a brand that would become a legacy. Listen in as Foster shares his incredible journey through generations of shoemakers to bring us the global brand we know today: Reebok.

Foster’s entrepreneurial journey is nothing short of inspiring, as he took the company through ups and downs, broke into competitive markets, and created a niche in the market for his brand. Acquired by Adidas in 2005 for a whopping $3.8 billion, Foster has since retired and authored a book: “Shoemaker: The Untold Story of the British Family Firm that Became a Global Brand”.

In this astounding interview, Nathan Chan and Foster discuss the entrepreneurial journey, and everything Foster has learned along the way when it comes to business and brand.


Key Takeaways

  • From a family of shoemakers and cobblers, how Joe Foster’s passion for shoes and entrepreneurship began from an early age
  • The early days of Reebok, then named J.W Foster and Sons, and manufacturing post WW2
  • Breaking into a new market, competing with Adidas and Nike, and how Foster carved a niche for Reebok
  • How Runner’s World gave Reebok the opportunity they had been waiting for
  • Becoming mainstream, and what solidified Reebok as a brand
  • How Reebok was acquired by Adidas in 2005 for $3.8 billion
  • Foster’s book “Shoemaker: The Untold Story of the British Family Firm that Became a Global Brand”
  • Foster’s advice to entrepreneurs and why they need to embrace complications and make them their own

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