This week I’m going to talk about how Crocs surprised the fashion world and managed to revive their brand. Crocs have sold more than 720 million pairs and I might be the only person that doesn’t own a pair of Crocs.
Crocs was founded in 2002 by Scott Seamans, Lyndon Hanson, and George Boedbecker Jr. The three came up with the idea to create a shoe similar to clogs but with much better functionality. The material used in the production of the shoe is called Croslite. This material comes with a shockproof feature that makes it easy to absorb shocks and vibrations. It also allows the wearer to distribute the weight of their foot evenly. Croslite is waterproof which makes it easy to wash. All these features made Crocs the perfect boating shoes.
The trio launched the shoe at a Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, which had more impact than they imagined. They were opened to more possibilities, it was more than a boating shoe, and they quickly realized that nurses and kitchen workers could also wear the shoes. This opened them up to an even broader audience.
In 2006 Crocs acquired Jibbitz, a company that creates small, button-like accessories and ornaments for Crocs. This was an extremely smart move as it created another revenue-generating opportunity for Crocs. Before being acquired, Jibbitz was reported pulling in about $2 million in revenues per month. Consumers love Jibbitz, it allows them to customize their Crocs.
In 2016, they entered the world of high fashion. Christopher Kane debuted his jewel-encrusted Croc during fashion week and the brand partnerships didn’t stop there. Crocs has partnered with other high-end fashion brands such as pLEASURES, Chrome Hearts, and Balenciaga. They’ve also done some very random partnerships with the likes of KFC, General Mills Cereal, and Hidden Valley Ranch.
They’ve been able to carve out a lane for themselves through celebrity endorsements and collaborations with the likes of Post Malone, SZA, Diplo, Bad Bunny, and Justin Bieber. Endorsements with huge celebrities increase Croc’s cultural relevance. The main reason Crocs blew up again was due to them being accepted by Gen Z during the 2020 pandemic. Crocs are seen as a fashion statement to this generation and the ultimate symbol of laid-back comfort. Gen Z loves going against social norms and defying conventional standards of beauty. The fact that people find Crocs ugly is more of an incentive for people to buy. Crocs has gone viral on Tiktok with nearly 7 Billion views on the Crocs hashtag.
Crocs are affordable, comfortable, and accessible. I can’t really see any other shoe replicating what they’ve built therefore I believe they’re here to stay. Crocs are expected to increase revenue to more than $5 billion by 2026. By releasing new collections with the right brands and celebrities they will continue to increase their popularity. Crocs aren’t shoes that you only need one pair of, consumers are very happy to own multiple pairs in different colors and styles. Some even treat Crocs as a collector’s item.