The brothers Ulf and Lars Lunge, who run four specialized running stores in Hamburg and two in Berlin under their family name, are launching the production of their own footwear line at a factory in Germany. They had already tried to market shoes made in Far East under their own brand, Lunge, but were not happy with the quality of the products sourced from Asia.
The two brothers, who have been in the business for 27 years, see a demand for high-end footwear made in Germany at a price level of €180 per pair. They are starting up with some models of running shoes, which are very much in fashion in Germany right now, but they plan to diversify into street shoes for walking and other purposes. To accomplish this, the Lunge brothers have acquired an old cow stable at Düssin, in the East German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, where they plan to produce 15,000 pairs of shoes annually.
The Lunges want to sell between 3,000 and 5,000 pairs in their own Hamburg and Berlin outlets. Another 5,000-8,000 would be sold through other specialized retailers in Germany, including the members of the LEX group, an association of specialized running retailers of which the brothers are members. They operate a total of 73 stores whose sales reached €35 million last year. The rest of the production would be sold to foreign retailers - especially in Austria, Sweden, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.