PUMA opened the doors to its first North American flagship store in New York City, with a focus on fully immersive experiences via tech-driven sports engagement zones, a customization studio and digitally connected activations.
At the store’s PUMA x YOU customization studio, consumers can personalize PUMA footwear, apparel and accessories with patchwork, dips, dyes, 3D-knitting, laser printing, embroidery and material upcycling. Renowned artists and designers will hold residencies every two weeks to help bring customers’ visions to life.
Even more customization options will be available with the store’s launch of Chinatown Market University this Labor Day weekend. Sneaker fans will be able to customize their purchases using the fashion label Chinatown Market’s state-of-the-art printing technology. Creatives can also source inspiration from the DIY and customization classes that Chinatown Market will be teaching.
PUMA has something in store for sports junkies too. Visitors can virtually race down the streets of New York City in professional-grade F1 racing simulators, the same ones PUMA brand ambassadors Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen use to train when they’re not on the track. Soccer fans can also test the latest PUMA boots via an in-store simulator that mimics the pitch of San Siro Stadium while PUMA brand ambassadors and professional footballers virtually coach them. A basketball zone will feature a large screen gaming experience with PlayStation game NBA 2K and quick release (QR) codes placed on all products.
Through iMirror by NOBAL, an interactive mirror, customers can view products in alternate colors and styles then shop alternative selections based on items they try on.
The 18,000 square foot store spans two floors and will carry the full range of PUMA products.
In recent years, the brand has upped its spend on experiential marketing. In 2018, PUMA signed Korean pop group BTS as global ambassadors and announced its re-entry into the basketball sneaker market for the first time in 20 years. The brand announced Jay Z as the creative director for PUMA Basketball. This year, PUMA used an augmented reality (AR)-enabled mobile app to promote its LQD Cell Open Air sneakers. The app gave users access to an AR running game and additional AR filters.