By Erin Irish
New Balance Athletics, Inc. is an American multinational corporation that specializes in footwear and is one of the world’s major manufacturers. In 1906, William J. Riley founded New Balance under the name New Balance Arch Support Company. Riley is said to have been inspired to focus on balance and support by observing chickens in his yard. His first designs were directed at arch support and had three support points aimed at increasing balance and comfort. He was said to have kept a chicken foot on his office desk to show how his footwear targeted arch support.
The company is based in the Brighton area of Boston, Massachusetts. New Balance maintains its manufacturing presence in the U.S. and Europe, which causes their prices to be higher than other footwear competitors who manufacture outside of these places. To compete with the companies offering lower prices, New Balance claims to be worth their cost because of special technical features that make the brand stand out. Some of the features include the incredible comfort and support the shoes offer because of special gel inserts, heel counters and a greater selection of sizes targeting particularly narrow or wide sizes. The company has accumulated a whopping $41 billion since 1991. New Balance not only produces footwear but also sportswear, apparel, and sports equipment.