Today we are talking to the parents of KOIO-a relatively young brand, but already has an army of fans of elite sneakers: the company's founder Chris Wichert and co-owner Johannes Quodt.
1. Where and when was the Koio concept invented?
We left jobs in finance in Europe to do something we're passionate about -> Moved to NY and built a brand around the notion of empowering people to take risks and dare to live the life they envision
2. Koio-is it more about the American or European lifestyle?
Bringing European sensibility and quality to American ambition and attitude.
3. How did You decide to create your own sneaker brand when the world is dominated by powerful companies with a rich history and an army of fans?
Building a strong brand around authenticity and craftsmanship is our key focus. We do so by working with the best factories in Italy and by collaborating with artists whose lifestory is closely related to that of our own brand, and telling their stories through the canvas of our sneakers. We do not make workout shoes at this point; They're all casual & comfortable everyday shoes that people wear for work, dinners, dates, strolls through the city, getting their groceriesYou position your sneakers as shoes not so much for sports as for life: business meetings, dates, walks.
4. Why do you deliberately cut off some of the potential buyers who focus exclusively on sports style?
We want to focus on the lifestyle component of shoes first, and not go into the performance aspect. We believe it is important to be focused and have a clear message to our customers. We are their most comfortable, everyday shoe that they can wear for a variety of occasions, and that allows them to seamlessly transition from one situation to the next while feeling confident in their style. Crafted with the finest calfskin leathers, hand-finished with unrivaled attention to detail, Koio are sneakers that dare to go anywhere our customers want to go.
5. What is the uniqueness of your shoes?
Pairing high-end Italian craftsmanship with luxurious comfort, versatility and accessibility; introducing colorways and materials our customers love and cannot find elsewhere, giving them a shoe that lasts forever.
6. How they want people to feel when wearing their shoes?
Confident in their style; dressed so that they feel like they are ready for anything that comes up in their day (work, meetings, drinks, dinners, dates); So that they can seamlessly move between situations, and are confident to be prepared for any and every situation that waits around the corner; they are shoes for the doers and go-getters
7. How do you win the hearts of your customers other than producing the highest quality shoes?
Aside from focusing on comfort and making a shoe that lasts, we do this through interesting story telling. We want to encourage our customers to go out there and live the life that they desire without regrets. We tell inspiring stories in our marketing to get that feeling across.Celebs loving our shoes: Mila Kunis, Jessica Alba, Ryan Reynolds, Seth Rogen, Ryan Seacrest, Lucy Hale, Jamie Chung, Bryan Greenberg, Joe Jonas (images below)Why do Celebs love our shoes: versatile style, impeccable quality and kick-ass design, high level of comfort / no breaking in.
8. How do we find the balance between trendy/comfortable?
The focus is on providing our customers with styles that we believe in and see as staples in every person's wardrobe; every season we start our research with the style and design that we'd like to go for, and only then aim to make this design as comfortable as possible; our goal is to offer the most comfortable shoes within a certain aesthetic / design; everything is handmade in Italy'
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