Jimmy creates community of 'sneaker-heads'
Jimmy Kicks, a new limited-edition footwear company, announced the launch of its Detroit-based fashion business. Recognizing the opportunity to provide individuality in an industry which often lacks it, Jimmy Kicks keeps fashion-forward customers in mind by shunning mass-produced, cookie-cutter footwear and offering consumers a pair of shoes as unique as their personalities.
"We want to create a community of 'sneaker-heads' by involving our customers in molding the Jimmy Kicks brand," said native Detroiter James Smith Moore, Founder and CEO of Jimmy Kicks. "The beauty of Jimmy Kicks is that we are agile and diverse, thanks entirely to our online community who plays a crucial role in shaping the look of every product we offer."
To adhere to the Jimmy Kicks design philosophy of encouraging consumer individuality, Jimmy Kicks regularly hosts online design contests in which consumers create and vote on sneaker designs. The winning concept is then produced in limited quantities and made available for purchase on the Jimmy Kicks website. The designer of the winning shoe is also awarded $500. To date, more than 50 shoe concepts have been submitted, and the company is always looking for new designs that will appeal to its diverse audience.
"Our sneaker designs are inspired by a wide range of influences, from Detroit's urban culture and contemporary trends to Chinese artistry and the latest sounds of Asian and Latino hip-hop," said Moore, who has always maintained a finger on the pulse of Detroit. "If you wear a Jimmy Kicks sneaker, I guarantee you will look sharp and you won't have to worry about seeing anyone else with your Jimmy Kicks coming or going."
Jimmy Kicks' inaugural "Jimmy Label" and "Fresh Paint" sneaker lines are currently available through the jimmykicks.com website, and the nightlife inspired "Jimmy Rave" sneaker line is scheduled for release in early 2011. Future product lines will include exclusive limited-edition hats, book bags and hooded sweatshirts all designed and voted on by the online community.
Jimmy Kicks grew from Smith's vision while attending Bizdom U, the Detroit-based non-profit entrepreneurial accelerator founded by Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Quicken Loans. Bizdom U is a four-month program giving entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn from professionals with real-world experience, and providing the tools and funding necessary to implement ideas and create startup businesses. A percentage of all Jimmy Kicks' proceeds go towards supporting other Detroit-based businesses developed at Bizdom U.
"James showed unwavering determination from the first day that he enrolled in Bizdom U," said Ross Sanders, Executive Director of Bizdom U. "We helped him combine his love of fashion and entrepreneurship, and molded it into a business unlike any other out there."
In addition to receiving funding from Bizdom U, James has raised nearly $50,000 from investors to ensure Jimmy Kicks reaches its goal of providing truly unique footwear to urban youth, designed by youth.