A London-based software company, Unmade, is expanding its collaboration with New Balance Team Sports from footwear to team clothing in the U.S. A spokeswoman for New Balance says there are no plans to implement the project in Europe, but we find it interesting enough to report about it.
The project will allow customers and team sports sales reps in the U.S. to customize team uniforms across a range of sports on the New Balance Team Sports website, using the UnmadeOS configurator to visualize the product before placing the order. The data can be translated to any partner factory and sent directly to pre-determined machines, promoting efficiencies and removing manual processes.
Unmade had already teamed up with New Balance at the end of 2019 on a project for the customization of the knitted uppers of one of its shoe models, the NB1 111 style, giving customers a choice of three patterns, six colors and some text. Here also, Unmade’s visualization system provided the customer or sales rep with an image of the re-designed shoe on the New Balance Team Sports website before it was ordered, eventually after being curated. The patented UnmadeOS algorithms automatically generated the data for the production process at New Balance’s own factories in the U.S.
Unmade has already worked for Rapha, the British brand of cycling apparel, to develop a customizable range of products for cycling teams. Founded in 2014 by Hal Watts, Kirsty Emery-Laws and Ben Alun-Jones, Unmade has worked with other companies including Open Ceremony, Farfetch, Christopher Raeburn and Selfridges. It has raised at least £10 million (€11.6m-$13.8m) in various funding rounds from institutional investors as well as leaders in fashion and retail industries including José Neves, founder and CEO of Farfetch.