Need to Know
22 : 10 : 21

Custom sneakers hint at the future of footwear, Coldplay experiments with net zero music events and why hotels are failing to connect with Gen Z.

A one-man factory rethinks sneaker manufacturing

Pixel Shoe by Tidhar Zagagi

Israel and Amsterdam – The Pixel Shoe project by Israeli designer Tidhar Zagagi harnesses the versatility of polyurethane (PU) foam to create custom-made footwear moulded in the shape of the wearer’s foot, reconfiguring the typical relationship between customer and manufacturer.

Using the portability of 3D printing technology, Zagagi built a mobile wooden cart that allowed him to travel across Israel producing personalised shoes in a matter of minutes, and is now displaying his concept to Dutch Design Week. A self-described ‘one-man-factory’, Zagagi allows his clients to customise the design and fit of their shoes according to personal preferences and foot shape.

By embracing a low-tech approach, Zagagi can create one-of-a-kind products in high volumes at affordable prices, envisaging a future where mass production is replaced by mass customisation – and pioneered by independent, unbranded designers. It points to an interesting future for those operating in the Sneaker Hub Market, as sneakerheads navigate their relationship with conglomerates.

Strategic opportunity

Not all brands can operate one-man factories, but they can take note of Zagagi's versatile approach to customisation and create in-store workshops that allows footwear to be manufactured to customers' exact preferences

Myya digitises post-mastectomy bra fits

Myya, US Myya, US
Myya, US Myya, US

US – In response to demands for inclusive and accessible post-mastectomy bras and prosthetics, start-up Myya is providing a digital solution for women who have had breast cancer.

With a focus on inclusivity, Myya’s silicone prosthetics – which are covered by US health insurance – are available in a range of colours to match all skin tones and come in more than 200 sizes. Through this service, the brand is humanising Digital Fit services through a hyper-personal and attentive approach that mimics in-store experiences.

When the pandemic hit, Jasmine Jones, founder of Myya, was concerned about the future of the best friend’ in-store service she provided to customers. 'That's when I knew I needed to take what we were creating in-store online.’

Its direct-to-consumer model takes the fitting experience away from medical settings, instead offering an appealing e-commerce experience supported by specially trained experts. As we forecast in Certified Wellness, there is increasing demand for lifestyle sectors to bridge the gap between medical products and design-led aesthetics.

Strategic opportunity

Clinical aesthetics can create a sense of otherness. From fashion and luxury to technology and homeware, industries can work with medical professionals to co-create health-led products that are also visually welcoming

Coldplay’s next world tour will be net zero

UK – Two years after refusing to perform live for environmental reasons, Coldplay has announced a world tour that will use technology and nature-based solutions to achieve a net zero carbon footprint.

The band plans to use direct air carbon capture technology in collaboration with Swiss company Climeworks to remove carbon dioxide from the air and preserve it for commercial use. The first-of-its-kind world tour will be powered by a rechargeable battery that runs on renewable energy designed by BMW. Beyond this, the band will also implement nature-based solutions including reforestation, soil restoration and rewilding to offset any further emissions generated by the tour.

As we go into 2022, a year in which thousands of cancelled live music events will finally go ahead, entertainment risks coming under attack for high energy consumption and unsustainable production models. By embracing new technologies, Coldplay is adapting to the emergence of Eco-Clubs and applying this concept to the live music sector.

Coldplay Music of the Spheres World Tour Sustainability Initiatives Coldplay Music of the Spheres World Tour Sustainability Initiatives

Strategic opportunity

Post-pandemic, the economic future of live events is in flux. The entertainment industry must be quick in adopting new technologies, such as carbon removal, to reduce its ecological footprint

Stat: Hotel brands need to step up to engage Gen Z

Dubai Presents by Dubai Tourism Dubai Presents by Dubai Tourism

With more consumers returning to tourism experiences, hotel brands have an opportunity to re-engage travellers through loyalty programmes. However, research from Morning Consult finds that awareness of loyalty schemes remains low among American Generation Z – a core demographic for the hospitality sector that are often left out of the conversation.

Its research finds that some 61% of American Gen Z are unaware of hotel loyalty programmes. Meanwhile, despite few members of the generation considering themselves to be the primary planner when it comes to leisure travel, a majority (80%) say they have some responsibility in the process. This share is naturally set to increase as the group’s spending power surges.

As the travel sector rebuilds loyalty schemes for the inter-Covid period, there is an even greater need for hotel brands to target young travellersprioritising incentives that are experiential and eco-conscious in nature.

Strategic opportunity

Hospitality brands should rethink existing loyalty services to suit the needs of young travellers. In the inter-Covid period, prioritise benefits like flexible bookings, voluntourism schemes and discounted rates

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