On Running IPO: What to know about On

The Roger Federer-backed On Running has grown into a sportswear company to be reckoned with, and has now completed a stock market flotation. Here’s the lowdown on the company following the On Running IPO.

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On Running IPO: What do we know about the On Running IPO?

The On Running IPO occurred on September 14, with the company raising $746 million through the sale of more than 31 million shares at $24 each. The valuation of the company is reported to be around $7.3 million following the transaction. 

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How much is On Running worth?

On Running is reportedly worth an estimated $7.3 billion following its IPO, as mentioned. 

What does On Running do?

On Running is a Switzerland-based sportswear company with a focus on running shoes, as well as selected apparel such as sweatpants and shorts.

The company was started in 2010 by Swiss Oliver Bernhard, a former Ironman and duathlon champion, along with co-founders David Allemann and Caspar Coppetti. The vision was to change the world of running through products born of advanced technology and revolutionary design.

With consultations from Swiss engineers, a prototype was launched which earned the company the respected ISPO BrandNew Award, and the shoe was put on sale shortly after. Details of potential fundraising endeavours to cover ON’s R&D and start-up costs are not in the public domain.

The brand’s proprietary CloudTec technology, which encompasses a series of holes or ‘Cloud Elements’ on the sole of the shoe, started out as an experiment in which Bernhard cut up a garden hose and stapled parts to his shoe in an attempt to understand stability and cushioning capabilities. Eventually, the development of the technology resulted in a shoe with added cushioning in the heel and less in the forefoot, to aim for optimal shock absorption.

The company’s development of CloudTec led to more technological innovations, all developed inhouse.

On Running has managed to grow its presence in a variety of countries, with products being sold in more than 6,500 retail stores across some 50 nations and a userbase claimed by the company of more than 7 million globally. On now has offices in USA, Japan, Australia and Brazil.

Who are On Running’s competitors?

On Running’s competitors include specialist shoe giants such as US operator New Balance and Japanese multinational ASICS, as well as smaller operators such as Brooks, Merrell, and Naturalizer. Many of these operators try to set themselves apart with the latest runner-friendly technology such as New Balance’s Fresh Foam 860v11 and ASICS’s GEL system.

Of course, ever-present global sports apparel manufacturers such as Nike and Adidas are also in the conversation.

How does On Running make money?

On Running makes money through the sale of its footwear and apparel. Its products tends to the more expensive end of the market, according to data from shoe review website RunRepeat.com, which compiles results from thousands of user reviews.

The average price of an On pair is around $135 as of August 2021, as per data from the site, but with a correspondingly high rating of more than 86/100. This compares to an average price of just over $120 for Adidas and a rating of just over 80/100, and Nike with an average price of around $117 and a rating of just over 84/100.

What is On Running's business strategy?

On Running’s business strategy from the beginning was centred around a focus on quality technology and design, as outlined, but also to address an evolving audience of people who see running as more of a social activity than in the past. The resulting ‘athleisure’ market, characterised by runners wearing the shoes across a more varied range of settings, means a requirement for both a performance focus for hardcore runners and a style element for wider leisure use.

The company has implemented its marketing strategy through a range of means, from award entries to partnerships with top US running teams. In July 2019, the company built a self-sufficient, zero waste temporary hut in the Swiss Alps to communicate the value of the company’s heritage and its ethos of sustainability, as well as the spirit of ‘luxury through reduction’.

The arrival of tennis star Roger Federer as co-entrepreneur and investor was a key boost for the marketing reach of the company. At On’s 2020 launch of new product THE ROGER Centre Court 0-Series, the man himself unveiled the new product by opening a giant shoebox on the interactive event ROGER Live, resulting in more than 630,000 YouTube views.

Is On Running profitable?

On Running does not disclose its financials, so any figures to provide comparison to other companies’ margins would be speculative.  

Who owns On Running?

The ownership of On Running is split between a range of individuals, such as the founders Allemann, Coppetti and Bernhard, with Roger Federer taking a stake in the company in 2019 after his Nike contract came to an end. Federer was known to be a fan of On prior to the investment, and would come onboard to work on new innovations alongside the existing On team. 

There is no information in the public domain about any venture capital or other private interests in the company.  

Key personnel of On Running

David Allemann – Founder

Oliver Bernhard – Founder

Caspar Coppetti – Founder

Marc Maurer – Chief Operating Officer

Martin Hoffman – Chief Financial Officer


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