Asics is a Japanese multinational corporation which produces sportswear. Asics manufactures products like footwear, clothing and accessories such as backpacks, caps etc. The company is headquartered in Kobe, Japan.
Kikachiro Onitsuka founded Onitsuka Co. Ltd, in the year 1949. Asics formally known as Onitsuka Tiger has been a significant competitor in the shoe market since the late 1940s. His main aim was to create a product that would promote a sound mind and sound body in a depressed, post-war Japan. Japan’s youth was suffering from low morale due to the war situation. He thought of doing something for the youth to uplift their fitness and morale.
Kihachiro began manufacturing basketball shoes in his home town. The company expanded its models with a variety of models in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s. The company became particularly known for the Mexico 66 design. This model was first featured by Bruce Lee the famous martial artist who helped popularize the shoe.
The iconic emblem, designed by Herb Lubalin in 1977, aimed to represent not only a sports track or a disc but also the growth and progress of a person, engaged in sports activities. The original Asics logo which has become iconic throughout the years was introduced in 1977 and featured a sleek edgy emblem placed on the left of the bold lowercase logotype, executed in a custom sans-serif typeface.
In the year 1977, the company merged with fishing and sporting goods company GTO Jelenk to form Asics Corporation. After the merger of the company, Onitsuka named the President. Although after the name change they continued a range of Asics shoes and sold it under the OnitsukaTiger label.
Asics also bought a Swedish outdoor brand Haglofs, for $128 million. They also acquired the fitness app Runkeeper in 2016.
Relationship with Nike
Nike, Inc was founded to sell Onitsuka Tiger shoes in the United States. When Phil Knight the Co-founder of Nike visited Japan and was impressed by Onitsuka Tiger shoes. He then
visited the Onitsuka Tiger office and asked to be their sales agent in the US. Both Nike and Onitsuka Tiger continued to work together for quite a few years. After a number of years, the relationship crumbled and both companies sued each other. Nike then retains the naming rights to several shoes.
Asics has sponsored various associations, teams and individuals. They have sponsored World Athletics and the Los Angeles Marathon. The company also manufactured the official kit for the Australian Cricket Team replacing the German manufacturer Adidas.
The future of Asics
Asics will continue to embody the legacy Onitsuka left behind. This company was originally founded to raise the spirit of Japanese youth but ultimately promoted a healthy lifestyle throughout the world. These ideals helped form the Asics of today.
Are ASICS shoes good for everyday use?
Yes, the shoes are made with good amount of cushioning, rubber outsole and insole, and gel heel. With all such features, it is perfect for everyday usage.
What does ASICS stand for?
ASICS is an acronym of the Latin Expression Anima Sana in Corpore Sano which means you should pray for a healthy mind in a healthy body.