Thursday, December 8, 2011

Zipz shoes shows streetcred

Back: Shameen Adams (left) and Johan Terblanche (right), participants in the recent 
World Musclemania championships in Las Vegas, flanking Zipz distributor Du Toit Botes. 
Zarian Simpson and skateboarder Wesley Smith are in front.

Du Toit Botes with the latest Zipz range

Bodybuilders flexing their muscles, fitness champs strutting their stuff and DJs spinning cool tunes … all with a title or two to their names. Not the usual models you’d expect at a shoe promotion. But then, there is nothing “usual” about Zipz, the new footwear brand with the zip-off uppers, nor the Cape Town crowd applauding the entertainers, sometimes joining in the fun ... when they are not trying on shoes.

This is the true canvas urban footwear market. Their heroes are the likes of former SA champion bodybuilder Shameen Adams and Johan Terblanche, both recently back from the World Musclemania World Championships in Las Vegas; SA Fitness Champ Llewellyn Cordier, who came second in the World Fitness championships, also in Las Vegas; Mr Fitness SA runner up Darren Booysen, also a competitor in Las Vegas and DJ Kodaks, 4-times African DJ champion. All wear Zipz, of course.

The occasion is the opening of the Zipz “Sushi bar”-type counter erected around a pillar in Canal Walk. Throughout the weekend of 2-4 December the music and acrobatic fitness routines (only oldies would call it breakdance) draw the crowds. Centrally placed, there’s hardly a shopper in the Mall who has not seen (or heard) the Zipz promotion. With the different upper styles and designs displayed under the glass tops of the counters, all passsers-by are able to see the eye-catching designs. And many of them stop to try on and buy.

Local distributor Du Toit Botes is running between the Zipz ambassadors, the warehouse to replenish stock and customers who want to know more about the brand. Since launching the brand a few months ago, he’s been on a mission promoting it to young, trendy, urban and streetwise customers.

The fact that Zipz is the official footwear sponsor of the X Games has opened doors to the Moto X, skateboarding and BMX communities. The dancers in the Red Bull Beat Battle were all wearing Zipz – and the winners got customized uppers, with their special designs sublimated on the uppers with a special machine made for Zipz.

The Strcrd show in the Johannesburg CBD was brilliant, Botes enthuses, with crowds partying in the closed-off streets till early morning. And while most customers buy one sole and several uppers, they expect a great demand for extra soles from the participants in the World Downhill Skating Champs in Rooi Els and Betties Bay on Sunday December 11th.

Darren Booysen, runner-up in the Mr Fitness SA campaign, entertaining the crowd with his routine, 
to music provided by DJ Kodaks, 4-times African DJ champion and Zipz ambassador.



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