Move over Nike Air Force 1s, red-soled Louboutins, and Gucci flip-flops, it seems yet another iconic piece of footwear has taken the fashion world by storm, a shoe famed throughout the world for expertly epitomizing sex, luxury, and pure exuberance – Crocs.
Despite years of weathering insults regarding their highly controversial appearance, existing for nearly a decade as the butt of almost every fashion joke known to man, it seems the brand has finally managed to achieve the impossible, recently hitting an all-time high share price, according to Hypebeast. "The Colorado-based label reported growth across every category in the first quarter of 2021," the outlet for wrote, “Revenues increased by 64% to $460.1 million USD year on year, digital sales grew by 75.3% (making up 32.3% of revenue), direct-to-consumer sales soared by 93.3% and wholesale revenues were up by 50.1% over the same period. Overall, this strong performance led to a 16% increase in the Crocs share price.”
So why, exactly, are we all apparently rushing to buy the Croslite clogs and their stocks, conspicuously sans Elon Musk's stamp of approval, in these trying times? Aside from the fact that none of us can evidently be bothered to wear fancy shoes during this chaotic year, the answer appears to be a combination of new leadership and the glowing endorsement of some famous faces. In early 2021 Emma Minto, a 16-year Nike executive left her elusive post to sign on as Crocs's senior vice president and general manager for the Americas, a position designed to “oversee a period of growth,” according to the style news outlet.
“Anyone paying attention knows that Crocs’ brand and business have never been stronger, and there’s plenty of room for continued growth,” Minto explained in a statement. “I’m excited to join this incredible team and ‘come as you are’ culture, bringing the joy of comfort technologies and personalization to consumers everywhere.”
Beyond internal shakeups, the Colorado-based company has also employed several celebrity collaborations in bringing their brand into the 2020s. Over the past few years, Crocs has released several high-profile collabs with big-name celebrities, including dropping a glow-in-the-dark shoe with rapper Bad Bunny, working with artist Post Malone on five different collections, and teaming up with pop star Justin Bieber on two limited collections, including one attempting to bring back the iconic fashion duo that is Crocs and socks. "Crocs with socks is definitely the move," Bieber said of his second collab with the footwear brand. "They’re comfortable, they’re fashionable, and most importantly it’s fun to bring your own style to how you wear them." Despite his attempt at marketing the strange pairing, it seems not everyone is sold – on Friday, fashion entrepreneur and Spice Girl Victoria Beckham made it clear she was simply too posh for the spicy combo, saying she'd ‘rather die’ than don the “Baby” singer's plastic-ish clog.
Despite Beckham's disapproval, big-name artists are far from the only celebrities putting Crocs back on the map. Earlier this week, a limited-edition run of adult-sized, light-up shoes featuring the automotive star of Pixar's Cars franchise, Lightning McQueen, sold out within an hour of appearing on the site, with listings for the shoes immediately popping up on resale sites including eBay and streetwear flipping giant, StockX, with some listings peddling the clogs, originally worth $49.99 for hundreds of dollars, Insider reported. As of writing, the kachow-tastic clogs are currently going for upwards of $240 on various sites.