MARYSVILLE — Northside is proving that trade can be a two-way street.
The outdoor footwear company based in Marysville has long designed shoes that were made in China and sold mainly in the U.S. and Canada.
Now the company is ramping up efforts to sell the shoes to Chinese consumers.
“People everywhere are looking for a dependable, approachable outdoor brand,” said Jack Wolfin, president of Triple T Trading, which owns Northside, in a statement. “We are thrilled at the opportunity to make our footwear available throughout mainland China.
The company is working with its import business, Fortune Star International, to distribute its footwear and other products in China.
“We feel like there will be a growing demand for outdoor footwear as more people in China want to get out and explore,” said Nam Lui, the president of Fortune Star International, in a statement. “We’re excited to make Northside footwear more readily available as people of all ages continue to show an enthusiasm for the outdoors.”
Fortune Star presented the Northside brand at tradeshows in both Beijing and Shanghai over the past year. The company has partnered with Sanfo, the largest outdoor products retailer in China, as well as other retailers to sell Northside shoes in stores and online throughout the country.
China is an appealing market, because Chinese consumers are becoming more and more interested in outdoor activities, according to Triple T Trading.
The company points to a report from the China Outdoor Association that expects 12 percent to 20 percent growth in sales of outdoor shoes and apparel each year through the end of this decade. If that were to occur, Chinese consumers would spend nearly $5 billion a year by 2020.
In July, Northside opened a 110,000-square-foot office and warehouse building at 4025 152nd St. NE Marysville, constructed specifically for its business.