Considering the popularity of certain injection-molded footwear brands, it only makes sense that others would come for the category with new intentions. Enter Joybees.
Under the tutelage of current CEO and former Crocs merchandise manager Kellen McCarvel, Denver-based Joybees has officially launched into a footwear market that turned Crocs into one of the holiday’s most successful footwear brands and has Kanye West talking about his dreams to manufacture his own EVA-based footwear in Wyoming.
“We are excited to bring a product line to the market place that gives consumers an easy to love shoe at an affordable price point,” McCarvel said. “Injection-molded EVA provides a great opportunity to make a shoe that is durable, comfortable and lightweight.”
Joybeess will exclusively manufacture in China, McCarvel told Sourcing Journal in December, adding that the startup is searching for a way to make its lightweight, durable EVA more sustainable. The Denver firm is considering adopting a 20 percent mix of recycled materials, including “something that has a more bio-based component or filler,” he added.
EVA is also anti-odor, Joybees said, due to its “closed-cell” design, making it an ideal material for footwear despite its somewhat unsustainable production path.
To nurture Joybees’ development, former Crocs CEO John McCarvel joined as a board member and advisor, as well.
“Because of our experience and industry connections, we are uniquely positioned to work with top designers and manufacturers that only established brands typically have the ability to engage,” the one-time Crocs chief said. “I have worked inside many brands that have experienced tremendous growth. I look forward to watching Joybees fill a market void with an accessible, family-friendly product line.”
Initially, the brand will launch with five sandal styles: the Everyday Sandal, the Dance Sandal, the Casual Flip, the Splash Sneaker and the Adventure Sandal. Prices range between $19.99 and $27.99.
Joybees intends to focus on selling directly to consumers through e-commerce, although McCarvel expressed interest in courting small, independent wholesalers and mid-tier, value-oriented national chains as the brand gains a foothold.