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The New Classics: Sperry Top-Sider Celebrates the A/O Boat Shoe

Don’t underestimate the power of storytelling. As Sperry Top-Sider director of marketing David Mesicek said, “Brands with a real story to tell are the ones consumers are choosing, as they are seeking meaning in all products they buy. [That is] great news for us at Sperry.”

This winter, the Wolverine Worldwide-owned company completely sold out of its women’s mid-height Saltwater duck boot, and its other weather styles were on fire leading up to the holiday season, Mesicek noted. The company is expected to end its fourth fiscal quarter strongly with high-single-digit revenue growth.

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It was a positive end to a busy year for Sperry that brought great product, laser sharp focus on its customer, significant marketing investment and a winning collaboration with New York City surf shop, Extra Butter. “Sperry has always made product for year round wear, but the back half of 2014 validated the fact that we are a brand relevant for consumers no matter the weather or wearing occasion,” Mesicek reported.

Sperry aims to keep the momentum flowing by sticking to a story that is knows best: easy, classic footwear. In 2015, the brand is celebrating its iconic silhouette, the A/O boat shoe. Mesicek said, “It’s simple, it’s functional, it’s always appropriate and we can’t wait to show the global market all the fun ways we are keeping this item fresh.”

The brand is banking on rich leathers and natural textiles in interesting shades of blue, red and green mixed with bold prints like camouflage to renew collections.

Despite the increase in raw material costs—a challenge Mesicek noted all brands are feeling—Sperry Top-Sider remains unfazed, zeroing in on new materials with character. He said, “Those brands which have quality product coupled with a brand that means something to consumers will fair this hurdle just fine.”