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IN THE NEWS
Keen, OIA, Hari Mar

Portland, OR-based Keen has delivered 650 Fit Shield protective barriers to retail accounts, the company said. The clear vinyl plastic shields, designed for use at the fitting stool, separate and protect both store employees fitting clients and customers as they are fit. The company began delivering the shields to select accounts, including Birkenstock NW, this summer.

“It’s important for us to recognize the new norms and be mindful of the human interactions inherent within our footwear business,” Chris Heffernan, Keen GM, said in a statement. “The Fit Shield offers peace of mind and an additional level of safety for retailers and shoppers alike. Enhancing safety and putting our values in motion is what KEEN has always been about.”

The Outdoor Industry Association, in conjunction with the Utah State University and Western Colorado University, has launched an Outdoor Industry Business Certificate. The online, self-paced, four-course programs are available to both industry professionals and candidates looking to establish their careers in the industry, and are being offered at a reduced price of $300 per class ($1200 per certificate) through the end of the year.

“Outdoor Industry Association is dedicated to supporting our members and the industry through these difficult times, and we saw launching these courses ahead of schedule as one way to do that,” said Kristen Freaney, director of the emerging leaders programs at OIA. “We know that layoffs, furloughs, a changing job landscape, and a more competitive job market are a few of the challenging economic impacts of COVID-19. The ability to upskill or re-skill at an affordable price is critical for people who are trying to enter, find a new role in, or adapt to changing demands in the outdoor industry workforce.”

Faculty at USU’s Outdoor Product Design and Development Program will teach courses for the Sustainable Product Design and Supply Chain Certificate. Faulty from WCU’s Outdoor Industry MBA program will teach courses for the Responsible Business in the Outdoor Industry Certificate. In 20201, faculty at the University of Colorado Boulder will teach courses for an additional business certificate that will focus on environmental policy and stakeholder engagement.

Hari Mari is one of 25 companies named as a top brand for growth in the second quarter by SimilarWeb. Criteria for selection to the list included strong DTC expansion and seasonally broad product assortments. The Dallas company, founded in 2012 by Jeremy and Lila Stewart, has seen its year-to-date web sales surpass the brand’s revenue for all of 2019. HariMari.com web visits rose 198 percent in the second quarter from the prior period.

Italian footwear exports declined nearly 30 percent in volume and value during the first four months of 2020, according to a data tracked for the Research Centre for Assocalzaturifici. Total pairage was off 17 percent and the average price per pair declined 5.7 percent. Exports to the U.S. fell 15.2 percent.