Taking it back to basics might not be such a bad thing, but it is another example of how every single line in the budget is being squeezed to extract the last drop of value, mostly at the expense of fun and innovation. And it has definitely put a serious dent in marketing budgets.
In their defence, brands are absorbing some price increases, but there is a limit to their generosity. In some cases, they are forced to compromise on materials in order to meet sharp price targets. That can mean shaving as little as a dollar or two off the real cost of each shoe, which translates to a whopping $5-$10 saving off the finished item on the retail shelf. It also means that we are stuck in a never-ending vortex of retro releases, because as I previously mentioned, the cost of creating new shoes from the ground-up is between $100-130k, possibly more for a highly technical performance model. Any wonder we are swamped with minimalist shoes in bland colours?
Where, exactly, is the excitement for a new generation going to come from?
Check out our next feature: REEBOK CLASSIC VINTAGE COLLECTION