You may not know it, but your favorite footwear retailer is Kane.
The company started out in 2012 with the same goal as its competitors: To give customers what they want.
And that’s where things get tricky.
The brand’s success began in 2012 when, for a few bucks, you could get a pair of sneakers from the company.
That led to its own footwear line, but the company also saw a need to expand into the more casual market.
“I thought that we were missing a bit of a market,” says CEO Chris Kane.
“What people wanted was an easy-to-wear, durable, comfortable shoe.”
So Kane opened a boutique in New York and began offering custom-made boots for a price of $80 to $130.
And then, in 2014, Kane started offering custom sneakers for $200 to $400, which was way less than the $1,500 that most customers wanted to pay.
But then in 2016, the company was hit with a lawsuit from former employees who say the company abused its power.
Kane eventually settled the case for $500 million and has since expanded into a wider range of shoes, including custom-knit sneakers for a fraction of the price.
But the story isn’t over yet.
The suit also claimed that Kane lied about its footwear, and some former employees say they were let go because they complained.
In 2017, the Supreme Court ordered a new trial for the former employees.
So now, Kane is looking for new owners.
The Supreme Court heard arguments in the case on April 10, but a decision hasn’t been issued yet.
It’s unclear when that decision might be.
And the company is already hiring.
At least one of the new owners is trying to find a way to keep the brand alive in a world where other brands are in the process of being bought out.
And while the company will have to make some tough decisions to stay relevant in the market, it’s certainly not going to be one of them.
“The key to a great brand is a consistent, strong brand,” says Kane CEO Chris, whose name has become synonymous with the company’s signature sneakers.
“If the company can’t find a strong brand, then it’s not going anywhere.
It is not going away.”