Starbury’s Sale

by Lang Whitaker

Last night I wrote a post about the launch party for Stephon Marbury‘s new line of budget sportswear and shoes. You guys did a lot of talking about it, too, and while we all agreed that it was great that Stephon was trying to do something different, I was curious how well the shoes would sell. Because to be honest, sometimes the only reason people buy shoes is because they are expensive. While what Stephon is trying to do — making shoes and clothes that have quality but are actually affordable — is fantastic. But would anyone actually buy the stuff?

Well, I just got word that when the Steve and Barry’s store in Manhattan Mall opened this morning, there were about 500 people in line outside the store. The people came charging in when the doors opened, and the store completely sold out of Steph’s shoes. Really. They were bringing in shoes from the back, people kept coming in to get their kicks, and even the actual Steve and Barry were having to work the registers to help get people through there.

The only downside is that because of the low price-point, the store only made $7 profit. Kidding!!

For real, that scene wasn’t only in Manhattan. Stores in Kansas and Michigan had similar runs on the Starbury shoes, and I was told that nobody’s exactly sure how well they did at the other Steve and Barry’s stores because all of their stores were so much busier than they thought they would be that by this afternoon they hadn’t had a chance to tally things up and see where they stood just yet.

I know it’s been less than one day, but if this stuff I’m hearing is true (and I have no reason not to believe it), then I wonder what all this means in the longer run? Is there a real, hungry market there for low-priced shoes? Shaq‘s the only current player (respect to Hakeem for trying it years ago) who’s tried something similar, but his went for $40. For that price, you could buy four pairs of Starbury shoes.

I’m also curious about how they’ll feel, last, etc. If anybody out there gets a pair, drop me an email and let me know.