Industry News 7/21/2015

B$Z: Blundstone on a Growth Trajectory Amidst Ducati Scrambler Partnership

Blundstone, the original Chelsea boot brand since 1870 from Tasmania, Australia continues to exceed sales expectations in the U.S. market with retailers and consumers responding to the brand’s heritage appeal and utilitarian style. With growing sales, a strategic marketing campaign and an exclusive collaboration with world-renowned motorcycle brand Ducati Scrambler, the Australian company executes a strategic plan to extend the brand on a global scale into new markets.



“Blundstone is an authentic Tasmanian brand, rugged and individualistic, with a distinctive original look that is resonating tremendously well with the U.S. consumer,” says International Sales Executive, Andrew Ross. “From a global standpoint, we’ve had tremendous success in our native Australia, and Israel, Canada and Italy are on target to exceed sales expectations as well. We have additional markets such as France and Norway that have be opened this year and we are currently exploring distribution opportunities in South America and Eastern Europe. We set out to build a meaningful business here in the U.S. market with strategic plans to establish the brand currency. It’s quite an exciting time for the brand.”

The U.S. approach is built on the authentic, durable “go anywhere, do anything” spirit of the Blundstone brand. The brand released its first-ever women’s-specific Chelsea boot shipping to retailers this month, and an increased number of retailers and influencers alike are coveting the brand including Steph Claire Smith with over 700,000 followers on Instagram. A growing retail network bolsters consumer interest across the U.S. with retailers such as Barney’s, Steven Alan, Free People, J. Crew, and Urban Outfitters now counting themselves amongst the leading retailers now currently carrying the brand.

Brand Initiatives Group, a New York-based marketing and brand consultancy was retained to develop a distinctive brand positioning and a comprehensive go-to-market strategy for the U.S. market. “When we began our partnership with Blundstone over a year ago, we realized we had the unique opportunity to tell the brand story and create a compelling engagement strategy that leverages the authentic brand heritage  that only Blundstone can speak to,” says Brand Initiatives Group Managing Partner, Kate Shevack. “Our start point was defining the brand. Being clear on who you are as a brand is critical, it’s the lens for everything that you do and what defines you in the marketplace.”

Blundstone re-launched its U.S. website earlier this year with a full functioning ecommerce, user-friendly interface and a strong lifestyle component. In addition, Blundstone introduced a ‘Lifetime Guarantee Upgrade’ for Blundstone boots purchased in the United States giving consumers the option to register at purchase to have their boots backed to the highest degree possible, Blundstone’s Lifetime Guarantee. Its recent sponsorship of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and a robust social media program has contributed to the brands growing momentum.

With a budding cool-factor, Blundstone has been steadily gaining attention from prominent brand partners. This coming fall, Blundstone will debut its collaboration with world-renowned motorcycle brand Ducati Scrambler to consumers with a limited edition boot as part of Ducati Scrambler’s official apparel and accessory collection to coincide with the release of the Scrambler bike. The Blundstone Ducati boot will be available in September both online at us.blundstone.com and at select retailers nationwide.  A national campaign supporting the collaboration will be announced in August. The campaign will surround a Scrambler giveaway that will also launch September 1st, giving consumers the chance to participate and enter to win via Blundstone’s Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. More details to follow soon.

To learn more about the brand, Blundstone’s spring 2016 collection will be shown at Project NY, July 19th-21st, 2015 (booth #6015) and Outdoor Retailer, August 5th-8th, 2015 (booth #34167).