BOSTON, MA and BURBANK, CA, January 9, 2013 -- New Balance and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts announced a multi-year strategic alliance today that includes exclusive footwear, running-specific initiatives and co-branding opportunities.
This exciting alliance will bring New Balance's innovative, design-forward athletic footwear to the leading vacation destination in the world, in particular Disney's thriving sports business. As part of the collaboration, New Balance becomes the official athletic shoe of Walt Disney World Resort, Disneyland Resort and ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. New Balance also becomes the official running shoe for runDisney race weekends and the official baseball shoe of amateur baseball events at the Sports Complex.
In addition, New Balance also becomes the title sponsor of the track & field facility at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, home of the annual Walt Disney World Cross Country Classic and Disney's Track & Field Spring Training for high school and collegiate teams. Future initiatives include the creation of maps for the running trails at Walt Disney World Resort and fitness programs for Disney resort guests interested in pursuing healthy options.
"New Balance and Disney share a commitment to quality and innovation," says Rob DeMartini, President and CEO of New Balance. "We are proud to work with Walt Disney Parks & Resorts to showcase New Balance's brand excellence and the benefits of an active lifestyle."
"Our relationship with New Balance complements our company's efforts to provide healthy options for families during their Disney vacation," said George Aguel, senior vice president, Disney Corporate Alliances. "We are excited about this new agreement and look forward to working with New Balance."
To commemorate this alliance, New Balance created a men's and women's limited edition runDisney 860v3 running shoe that captures the spirit of two favorite Disney characters - Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse. The 860v3 - runDisney edition will be available for purchase at the 2013 Walt Disney World Marathon Health & Fitness Expo from January 10-12, future runDisney Health & Fitness Expos, special events created jointly by New Balance and Walt Disney Parks & Resorts as well as branded pop-up shops located at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
About New Balance
New Balance, headquartered in Boston, MA has the following mission: Demonstrating responsible leadership, we build global brands that athletes are proud to wear, associates are proud to create and communities are proud to host. New Balance is currently the only athletic shoe company that manufactures footwear in the U.S. with 25% of our U.S. footwear shipments produced at five New England facilities. The company also operates a manufacturing facility in Flimby, U.K. New Balance employs more than 4000 associates around the globe, and in 2011 reported worldwide sales of $2.04 billion. To learn more about how New Balance Makes Excellent Happen, please visit NewBlalance.com
ABOUT WALT DISNEY PARKS AND RESORTS
More than 50 years ago, Walt Disney created a new kind of entertainment families could experience together, immersed in detailed atmospheres and vibrant storytelling. His vision now includes a collection of five of the world's leading family vacation destinations -- Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, Calif.; Walt Disney World Resort, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.; Tokyo Disney Resort, Urayasu, Chiba, Japan; Disneyland Paris, Marne-la-Vallée, France; and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, located on Lantau Island. A sixth resort, Shanghai Disney Resort, is currently under construction in Pudong New District, Shanghai. In addition, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts includes the world-class Disney Cruise Line; Disney Vacation Club; Adventures by Disney, a guided group vacation experience to some of the world's most popular destinations; and Walt Disney Imagineering, which creates and designs all Disney parks, resorts, cruise ships, entertainment and attractions.
runDisney is a series of events providing runners unique opportunities to run through Disney theme parks. Race participants earn Disney-themed medals, experience legendary Disney entertainment and guest service and ultimately celebrate their accomplishments with a Disney vacation. The original event in the series, the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna, takes place in January followed by the Disney's Princess Half Marathon Weekend in February, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler in September and the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend in November. Disneyland Resort hosts the Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend in January and the Disneyland Half Marathon in September during Labor Day Weekend. More than 150,000 running enthusiasts participate in runDisney events each year. For more information, visit runDisney.com and follow us on Facebook (runDisney) and Twitter @runDisney.