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Today, we catch up with Von Zipper National Sales Manager Curt Fry to get an update on the sunglass maker's business.
For this holiday season Von Zipper is keeping things fresh with the release of a new frame called the Modcon (see photos). This style straddles the fence between the current retro trend and more traditional sport wrap and hits the stores in mid-November. Also, to keep the customer stopping to check out the goodies in the VZ case, we are constantly releasing new styles and fresh color updates. This holiday season is no different.
Yes, the smart retailers still understand that accessories, especially eyewear, usually turn the most profit per square foot on the retail floor. They are staying committed to the category, but I am seeing a trend with the top retailers. While once they had six to eight eyewear brands on the floor, they are now cutting it back to three or four of their top selling brands and keeping them fully stocked rather then have eight brands with cases half stocked.
This is the smart thing to do as the turns per brand have actually gone up for most all the retailers that have done this. By cutting out the poor-performing brands, the category overall is doing better.
Von Zipper does offer a great addition to our eyewear and goggle line with tee's, hoodies, headwear and unique pieces but not a full-blown clothing line at this time. But never say never. With our strong ties to the Billabong family, we do have the access to expand this category. However, at this time we are staying focused on the eyewear and goggle category, which is where we excel.
We launched our premium collection of eyewear Lucre last spring and, I do not want to let the cat completely out of the bag but we do have a new division within the eyewear category that we will be launching worldwide in Spring 2010. So stay tuned for that!
The VZ Goggle business is still very strong for us and yes we are launching a new goggle style at the SIA show in late January. We will also be demo-ing it at the On Snow Demo at Winter Park right after the show.
We are also continuing our collaboration with Skull Candy with our patented headphone Money Clip System. This allows the rider to clip the headphones onto any goggle and listen to music or answer phone calls with a touch of a button. When done shredding, the headphone cans clip back into the headgear for use in the car, airplane etc.
I am really excited to have the show in Denver and to be able to ride and test product with the retailers directly after. I think it is a much better atmosphere in which to present snow product.