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Billabong will be distributing Podium Distribution brands in Australia and at Billabong-owned stores including the nine-store retail chain, Amazon, in New Zealand.
I caught up with Podium Distribution VP Mike Dunlap, to find out more about the company’s new distribution strategy “Down Under.”
Dunlap said over the past several years the retail landscape in Australia has changed.
He said larger distributors like Billabong have had an advantage over smaller distributors, and that Podium has not been able to maximize sales to its full potential.
“Being part of Billabong’s portfolio of brands will afford us the opportunity to leverage their distribution channels and eventually get us more shelf space,” he added.
Dunlap said his previous distributor in Australia and New Zealand did an excellent job marketing the Podium brands there as well as establishing a strong brand position for them.
However, Billabong has strong financing and retail expertise in the country where it was founded. Dunlap said the move will help take the Podium brands to a new level in Australia.
For Billabong, adding DVS and Lakai will strengthen its footwear portfolio, and compliment its own brand, Kustom, which makes men’s and girls surf-influenced closed-toe shoes and sandals.
There will be a short transition period until Billabong fully takes over in the territory for Podium.
In New Zealand, Billabong will distribute DVS and Matix in its own Billabong retail stores, including Amazon. However, Podium’s current distributor will still be responsible for distribution of DVS, Lakai and Matix to all other existing retailers in New Zealand.
As for signing on with Billabong in other territories outside of Australia and New Zealand, Dunlap said he is taking things one-step at a time.
“As other opportunities arise that make sense for everyone involved, we would definitely consider it.”