Yes, the company known mainly for its Shape-ups is surging. Shares of Skechers are trouncing Nike, Under Armour and Adidas this year thanks to strong sales and profits.
Skechers is an American footwear company headquartered in Manhattan Beach, California, founded by CEO Robert Greenberg and his son Michael in 1992. After Robert left LA Gear, which he had founded in 1983, the Greenbergs set up Skechers as a distributor for Doc Martens. Importing counterfeit Doc Martens boots ended in a legal battle between Skechers and R. Griggs Group.
Skechers’ early products were utility-style boots and skate shoes; the company has since diversified to include thousands of athletic, casual and dress styles for men, women, and children.
Skechers makes an effort to maintain a trendy and stylish brand image by using celebrity-driven advertising, and has promoted its product with The Voice television show winner Danielle Bradbery, TV personality Brooke Burke-Charvet, marathon runner Meb Keflezighi, quarterback Joe Montana, and entrepreneur Mark Cuban. In 2014, the company signed a deal with the owners of the race horse California Chrome to display the company’s logo on various items worn by the horse and his handlers during the 2014 Belmont Stakes. In October 2014 musician Ringo Starr signed to appear in the global marketing campaign for Skechers Relaxed Fit footwear.
The company offers two distinct footwear categories: a lifestyle division that includes the charity line BOBS and Relaxed Fit comfort shoes, and a performance division that includes Skechers GOrun and GOwalk footwear. Through licensing agreements, the company offers branded apparel, bags, watches, eyewear and additional merchandise. Skechers has an extensive network of global distributors that sell its product in over 120 countries and territories, and nearly 900 Skechers stores around the world.
In 1998, Skechers signed an agreement with ModaCAD Inc. to participate in ModaCAD’s dynamic interactive, photo-realistic 3-D rendered virtual shopping mall.
In 2012, Skechers agreed to settle a class action lawsuit for $40 million based on a U.S. Federal Trade Commission complaint that it had misled customers with its Shape-Ups ads.