Vass discontinuing US sales?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by kabert, Apr 6, 2005.

  1. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    I would be very suprised if vass could ramp up their production capacity in any significant way. It is not that easy finding the right people who are willing to do this kind of work. The people in the store look niether hungry nor unhappy, why shouldn't they continue to do what they do well, and enjoy the fruits of their labors in a reasonable way? they could sell their name to target and have people make plastic shoes for them in bangladesh and make a nice piece of money without having to work, if they wanted. good for them for keeping up standards.
     


  2. Alexander Kabbaz

    Alexander Kabbaz Senior member

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    In order for a store to stock (such wonderful) shoes in this price range which, from all the investigating I have been able to do is ridiculously inexpensive for what you receive, they need to have a high traffic level of affluent male clients. The vast majority of shoppers at upscale general department stores such as Nieman Marcus, affluent though the shoppers may be, are women. Though women are volume buyers of mens shirts and ties, that is not the case with suits and shoes which are purchased primarily by the men themselves. Hence, with the criteria of affluence, high traffic, and male clients, you are left with a small selection of possible outlets, primarily Bergdorf Men's, Barney's, and Louis Boston. My suggestion to all of those of you who want the availability of Vass in the U.S. would be this: Each and every time you are in one of those three stores, say the following to your salesperson, "Do you carry Vass shoes yet?". If sufficient numbers of you do this and demonstrate both the power of SF and the desire for Vass, I can guarantee you that the word will reach these stores' buyers in short order. In this case, demand will equal supply.
     


  3. Alexis

    Alexis Senior member

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    You could be misinterpreted as saying, "Do you carry Bass shoes," you know, the MODERN CLASSICS? [​IMG]
     


  4. discostu004

    discostu004 Affiliate vendor

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    has vass considering doing a women's line? i see women's shoes that look like they cost $11 to make and a 3rd grader could make them and they sell for $495. think about the difference in (apparent to me at least) quality and workmanship between a vass/lattanzi etc and a manolo, gucci et al women's shoes. could be a cash cow@.
     


  5. T4phage

    T4phage Senior member

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    The problem with that is if the store end up carrying them, will there be enough actual buyers out there, as opposed to those coming in and inquiring.....
     


  6. spatten

    spatten Senior member

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    I wish they would at least set up a mail-order service similar to the one which Crockett & Jones runs.

    I would love to own a pair(s) of Vass shoes - I am just stuck in the middle of Iowa. Getting nice shoes - other than A&E is getting to be a real pain..
     


  7. Mike C.

    Mike C. Senior member

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    I was thinking about how the pricing of the shoes could be off. I don't think they are charging enough. For the qualilty of shoe that Vass offers, they should be priced in the Lattanzi/Kiton range.

    With goods on this level, it's all about perceived value. What is the perceived value of a Vass shoe? The $1K price range doesn't carry enough penache. Guys that buy shoes in the $1K+ range, don't care if it's 1 or 2K, as long as it looks good and feels good, and has the craftsmanship to back it up, they will buy it. The current prices may be devaluing the brand. They need to be more expensive.

    Just a thought.
     


  8. lisapop

    lisapop Senior member

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    Dude, the reason I appreciate Vass is BECAUSE of the value proposition and the sensible pricing.  Your suggestion to raise the prices to artifically foster an image of exclusivity would not serve Vass well in my opinion.  Fact is, many if not most in this forum and outside are more discerning than that.  Should you insist on paying a premium on those Vass shoes you purchase in exchange for a feeling of exclusivity, I imagine Vass would welcome such a gesture on your part.
    Grayson
     


  9. kabert

    kabert Senior member

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    So, will they make more money at the end of the day selling a few shoes at $1,000+ a pair or selling twice as many or more shoes at $650 a pair. And, all the while retaining the air of exclusivity that no doubt they want to protect and convey.
     


  10. alchimiste

    alchimiste Senior member

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    I sure wish I were lucky enough to call $650 shoes cheap.
     


  11. jcusey

    jcusey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Yes, unfortunately, some people, even shoe buyers, are all hat and no cattle.
     


  12. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Senior member

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    alexis,
    i believe it's pronounced "vosh".
     


  13. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Senior member

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    well, right now they don't have a single retailer in the u.s. i'd say that's as exclusive as it gets.
     


  14. matadorpoeta

    matadorpoeta Senior member

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    mr. harris:
    as i said earlier, my suggestion was only as a worst case scenario last ditch effort sort of thing. of course i wouldn't suggest a webstore if you want to sell the same shoes in stores. but if a few years down the line, if you still don't have any retail accounts, then why not sell them online?

    obviously vass is not content to sell their shoes only out of their budapest store if they want retail accounts and dream of a nyc store.
     


  15. Mike C.

    Mike C. Senior member

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    Marc, I understand where you are coming from, however it is not from the same place that the luxury goods customer is coming from. If the apparel industy had customers half as knowlegeable as us, they go out of business.. As I have said before, all the guys on this board who buy Kiton, Lobb, etc, on discount are not Kiton/Lobb customers. They may own many items from these particular brands, however, they are not the people Kiton/Lobb are looking at when determining market strategy. There will always be a sale/discount business, but if these companies rely on that, they have failed in anyones estimation. In this case, I am looking at the customer who spends full retail in the premium shoe market. These customers (for the most part) do not have the knowledge or discerning taste of anyone who has read this board for a month or more. If you tell this customer that a $650 shoe (Vass) is on par in terms of quality as Lattanzi/Kiton, the PERCEIVED vaule of the shoe will be lower. Perceived value is what sells luxury products, not ACTUAL value. In the luxury market, there are some goods that are Giffen Goods. I have seen this in the case of Loro Piana, Bijan, Brioni, and Cucinelli. There are many others as well. Undercutting in the luxury market has relatively no effect. Those customers will spend whatever it takes to buy something that they feel good about. They are not looking to save a few hundred bucks. In the case of Vass, I feel they are pricing themselves out of the market they should be in. They could demand much more for how much they put into their product. This wouldn't "artifically foster a sense of exclusivity" as you have put it, rather it would place Vass in the league it needs to be. That exclusivity would be well deserved.
     


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