SBJ/June 11-17, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Basketball shoes for dancing, not dunking

Over the years, the marketing appeal and athleticism of NBA stars have established and later made fortunes for footwear brands, from Chuck Taylor and Converse to Michael Jordan and Nike. Now, a decidedly different type of shoe manufacturer is aligning with the league, which has granted it a license to make NBA-logoed women’s dress shoes.

The licensee is Herstar, an Orlando company founded last October, which describes its mission on its Facebook page as one of “adorning sports fans in fashion forward and sexy sports attire.”

It is offering two shoe styles available with NBA team logos. A microsuede pump with a four-inch heel sells for $99.99. For $249.99, it’s offering a “crystal pump” with a six-inch heel. Initial distribution is limited to the company’s website. Herstar also offers shoes with logos from the universities of Florida, Alabama and Miami.

Though NFL licensing chief Leo Kane said the NFL has not licensed Herstar, the company is offering potential customers the opportunity to join an NFL product waiting list for a small fee, somewhat similar to NFL teams’ waiting list for season tickets. Earlier this year, NFL sock licensee For Bare Feet launched team-logoed heels and boots (SportsBusiness Journal, March 12-18).


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