One year after laying the foundation stone and despite the pandemic, the Advanced Shoe Factory 4.0 (ASF 4.0) in Ardoix, in the heart of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of France, started up its automated production facility for sports footwear on Sept. 16. ASF 4.0 is a subsidiary of textile specialist Chamatex Group in collaboration with partner brands Salomon, Babolat and Millet, all based in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region and shareholders of ASF 4.0. This season, ASF 4.0 is already producing the new Salomon Captiv ASF 4.0 hiking shoe and the Salomon Metacross trail running shoe, which will go on sale in early 2022. Babolat and Millet will launch their own models in 2023. The order backlog gives ASF 4.0 a perspective for the next three years, and an expansion of the plant is already planned, Chamatex said. ASF 4.0 currently employs about 20 people to produce 15,000 pairs of shoes by the end of 2021. The prototyping and production capacity will eventually allow it to develop and assemble 500,000 pairs of shoes per year and generate sales of €10 million to €15 million.