South African Running

Launch a running shoe brand

The Dream and the Challenge: Part 2

Develop a running shoe for South African runners designed by South African runners.

“What is the perfect running shoe for South Africans?” The Pivot & Run shoe would need a firm structure for long-distance running, fatigue-reducing underfoot comfort, and high energy return for long efficient strides.  

How to Get your Shoe Brand Started

Meet Roger, Alex, and Grant – the brand builders with the vision to create the perfect running shoe for South African distance runners. But with little knowledge of the actual cost and technicalities of shoemaking, they knew they needed expert help to turn their dream into a reality.

A Running Shoe Shoemaking Coach

Enter Wade, “The Shoe Dog,” and his team at Shoemakers Academy. With their technical and manufacturing experience, they helped the Pivot team organize their product design brief and move forward quickly. Decidedly, their next step was to open their outsole tooling and then directly onto sample production.

In just 18 months, the Pivot & Run Forge V1 Running shoe went from concept to launch – a remarkable feat given the challenging conditions of the Covid pandemic.

“Wade was readily available, easy to talk to, and had problem-solving ideas and answers to help with the tough questions.” -Alex

The product knowledge and research of the Pivot team, combined with the technical and manufacturing experience of Shoemakers Academy and their partners at DMC Sourcing, was the complete package. Working together, Pivot & Run saved countless hours of development time and thousands of dollars worth of trial and error mistakes. 

Lockdown to Launch in 18 months

Pivot & Run was able to create innovative new technology to meet their specific product performance goals. The Shoemakers Academy team had strong factory connections in Asia, which helped them refine their design and complete their specialized running outsole tooling without leaving home.


The Pivot & Run Forge V1 Running shoe

When the development samples arrived, the Pivot team hit the road running to perfect their design and launch their brand to retail.

Pivot & Run shoes are now available in the South African market and selling well to runners of all levels.

If you’re looking to start your own shoe brand, the Shoemakers Academy has everything you need to get started on the right foot!

Visit Pivot & Run online

Are you looking to reach your shoe design and brand-building goals faster and with fewer headaches?  “The Shoe Dog” can help.

Reach out for some 1-on-1 coaching. “The Shoe Dog” is available to coach you and your team. Our textbooks, online courses, and coaching options will help you build your skills faster and build a better product. If you’re looking to save money by making fewer common development mistakes and go deeper into footwear design, manufacturing, and brand-building, we can help. Check out these online video shoemaking courses taught by an industry professional and developed for all levels of aspiring shoemakers and brand builders. 

We love to hear from our shoemaking community. What is your biggest shoemaking challenge? Email us at: [email protected]