Collingwood will join New York, Los Angeles and Orlando as retail locations
Collingwood’s Biion Footwear takes next step with store opening.
About three years ago, Biion Footwear was a company looking to make a name for itself.
The company had launched its brand of shoes made from lightweight ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), at the PGA show in Orlando in 2014 and a year later, moved company headquarters to Collingwood. Fast forward, the company is selling shoes around the world and has inked a deal with Disney to make shoes featuring Mickey Mouse, Darth Vader and Spider Man on them as they have access to the entire company catalogue including the Marvel series.
The company has sold hundreds of thousands of pairs of shoes in more than 16 countries around the world including Australia, England and Italy.
“We’ve been blessed and fortunate that consumers love the product,” said CEO Rick Buchanan. On Dec. 14, Biion took the next step in the growth of the company, as it opened the first of five retail stores on First Street in Collingwood. The store will be open six days a week and will be the only Canadian location with others being located in New York, Florida, Texas and Los Angeles.
“Right now, those are our biggest markets in the U.S. and we sell into those places right now, in golf courses and some retailers,” he said. “California and Orlando were natural progressions with our Disney collaborations. We wanted our flagship to be here in Collingwood.” He said the move to Collingwood was the right one, as they’ve received great support from local residents and municipal officials.
“To move our business to Collingwood has been fantastic,” he said. “It’s a four season resort town, which lends itself to the clientele we’re going after.”
Buchanan came up with idea several years ago after he forgot his golf shoes and was forced to play the round in a pair of shoes made from EVA. “What if we did a golf shoe that way?” he recalled.
Buchanan said they are expanding their line of shoes, which include a variety of different colours and patterns. In 2018, the plan is to launch a penny loafer as well as a Chelsea boot. In addition to shows, Buchanan said they also plan to introduce matching belts in 2018. He said they also plan to have a full lineup of Star Wars and Marvel footwear in the new year as well as Warner Brothers and Universal characters set for late in 2018 or early in 2019.
He said the retail space, also serves as the new company headquarters, and said they continue to grow.
“We’re just trying to keep up,” he said. Buchanan has more than 15 years in the fashion business but told Simcoe.com in 2016, he hasn’t been involved in something like this before. “I haven’t seen a brand resonate across so many channels so quickly. We’ve been fortunate to have a great shoe that fits so many feet,” he said.
For more information on the company, visit biionfootwear.com.
© John Edwards, Collingwood Connection