Crocs branching out beyond footwear with deals

Crocs Inc. is looking to branch out beyond footwear, entering licensing deals with several companies on everything from clothing to sunglasses.
Terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

Crocs grew explosively after its colorful plastic clogs were introduced in 2002, but business began to falter in 2008 as the recession hit, the U.S. market became saturated and the company expanded internationally too quickly. But its results improved last year as the company expanded its product line to include sneakers, casual shoes and boots.

The Niwot, Colo. company said Thursday that it had a line of Crocs-branded adult and children's socks from Socks and Accessories Brands during the holidays. The socks were made by Intersocks and available in North America, but will soon be offered in Europe as well.

Crocs' deal with Accessory Exchange is for items including Crocs-branded hats, bags, backpacks, socks and gloves. The goods are currently available at Crocs' stores and its web site. Crocs-branded medical scrubs are now available at specialty stores and online via a partnership with ICER Brands.

Crocs also has an agreement with sports licensee Paramount for collegiate and Major League Baseball licensed footwear. The products are currently available.

Looking ahead to April, Crocs will launch children's clothing in an agreement with the A Group. The clothes will be offered in 46 countries. In May Crocs-branded sunglasses and sunglass accessories will debut in the U.S. and Canada thanks to a deal with Eye King LLC.

Crocs' goods are sold in 90 countries. Its stock added 15 cents to $20.64 in afternoon trading.

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