New Balance has been a shareholder of Gartner’s since 2003, when it acquired a 30 percent stake in the family-run company, and has now agreed to buy its Italian partner entirely.
Gartner Sports was founded back in the 1940s. It started as a specialty store for casual footwear and continued as a sports shop in South Tyrol. In the 1950s, Gartner moved into the wholesale trade with sporting goods.
For a while, it acted as the Italian wholesaler of Puma and, later on, of Uhlsport, another German brand of team sports gear. It also represented Swedish outdoor brand Fjällräven in the country. Most recently, Gartner Sports has been concentrating fully on New Balance.