Crocs — those foam resin clogs that were all the rage in 2007— are trending. The rapper Post Malone sang about “thousand dollar Crocs” on his latest album, there were several viral TikTock trends involving the shoes, and teenagers are showing them off on social media.
All that is surprising given that ten years ago, the company was on the brink of bankruptcy and some were predicting the brand’s demise. Andrew Rees is the current CEO of Crocs and helped orchestrate the company’s turnaround. He talked with Marketplace’s Molly Wood about why Crocs are making a comeback.
“We have capitalized on what we saw as two major trends on a global basis,” Rees said. “One is collaborations.” In recent years, Crocs has done collaborations with a slew of celebrities, artists and high-end fashion designers including Luke Combs, PSY, Post Malone and Vivienne Tam.
“The second big trend that we capitalized on is this mega trend for personalization,” Rees said. Crocs come in dozens of colors and can be personalized with charms the company sells called “jibbitz.”
Rees said that’s helped the company reach younger customers. “We wanted to move a little bit hipper, a little bit trendier and a little bit more fashion forward,” he said. “Because a) they have spending power, b) they’re on social media, and c) through social media, they do influence a lot of other people.”
In investment bank Piper Jaffray’s semi-annual survey of teenagers this fall, Crocs registered it’s highest reading ever as the 7th most popular footwear brand among teenagers.