Crocs goes high fashion with Furiani line

NIWOT – Crocs Inc. is going high-fashion as it prepares to launch the Furiani shoe collection for women in March.

The Furiani line is named after Stefano Furiani, a top shoe designer at Crocs Italy. The shoes will sell for $80 to $120 in a variety of designs and colors, said Sandra Aris, Crocs’ global design director. Crocs’ trademarked Croslite material is on the inside of each shoe, she said.

Thirty top retailers in the United States will carry the shoes, to start – part of the company’s marketing strategy, Aris said.

Women’s heels and flats made with shiny TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) material in a variety of colors will be sold through independent shoe stores and online retailers, including Harry’s Shoes in New York and Zappos.com. The line will not be available on Crocs-related websites. Boulder-area shoe buyers will have to go online to find the shoes – no local store currently is signed up to carry them, Aris said.

The inaugural Furiani shoe collection is inspired by architecture and contemporary art, Aris said. “It’s like modern art for your feet. … It’s a contemporary look – blocky, but soft and sexy at the same time. You can wear them all day. They’re comfortable.”

In late December, Crocs (Nasdaq: CROX) announced that an entity formed by Blackstone Group LP (NYSE: BX) would purchase $200 million of newly issued preferred stock in the company. Chief executive John McCarvel will resign by April 30 as part of the deal, the company said.

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