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Crocs and Frocs no Longer Rock

{ Posted on May 25 2010 by Marcus Alston }
Tags : , ,
Categories : Personal Finance, Wal-Mart

Its official, Crocs and fake Crocs (my wife calls them “Frocs”) are no longer hot.  This probably comes as no surprise to any consumer tuned in to the Croc phenomenon.  This was confirmed by an employee at a local Wal-Mart on May 23.

Story. This past Sunday (May 23), I was in Wal-Mart looking for Frocs for the kids (I have a pair of black Frocs pictured here that I am not growing out off anytime soon) and asked an employee if Wal-Mart still carried (imitation) Crocs.  The kids grew out of real Crocs (my wife bought the real ones for them) and Frocs (you guessed it, I bought these for the kids).  The employee explained in a somewhat irritated voice, “No, we don’t carry them Crocs no more.  Man, we had a pile of those things last year and we couldn’t get rid of them.  We ended up selling them for a dollar!”  She went on to grumble a few more things and after I realized that she was mumbling more to herself than to me, I thanked her politely and quietly so as not to interrupt her and walked away.  To be fair there was another customer in the area that she may have been talking to.

Background.  Crocs, Inc. produced the bright colored plastic clog design (originally developed as a spa shoe).The first model introduced by Crocs, Inc. came out in 2002 at a Boat Show in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  As the story goes, all 200 pairs of Crocs brought to the show were sold out.  Thereafter, Crocs mania set in and the shoe was available nationwide.

Frocs Rise.  Despite obtaining patents between 2002 and 2006 which covered its manufacturing process and shoe designs and Crocs, Inc. bringing lawsuits against other shoe companies that produced a similar product, imitators or Frocs, were plentiful.  These Frocs took advantage of the Crocs buzz and undercut Crocs’ price.  I recall Crocs in the $20 to $30 range.  Frocs were available for about $10 or less.  “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” author  Charles Caleb Colton once said.  If true, Crocs, Inc. should have been quite flattered as imitation Crocs could be found all over the place just a few years ago.  In fact, Frocs became more omnipresent than Crocs.

Crocs Sales Decline and Cooling Off.  Even though Crocs, Inc.’s revenue rose to $847 million in 2007, this success was relatively short lived.  Beginning in 2008, sales slowed and Crocs, Inc. saw its revenue and stock price sink dramatically.  On October 31, 2007, the stock CROX dropped from $75 per share to slightly under $40 per share.  CROX later dropped below $1, to as low as 79 cents per share.  It is currently at about $9.22 per share as of May 25.  Its 52 week trading range has been between $2.40 and $11.40 per share.  With Crocs mania over, both Crocs and Frocs sales have declined.

Conclusion.  When Wal-Mart, the biggest retail store in the United States, stops carrying knock offs of your product because it’s not selling, it’s not a good sign for the real thing either.  Good luck Crocs, Inc.

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2 Responses to “Crocs and Frocs no Longer Rock”

  1. My walmart always has frocs so I guess they are still popular here.

  2. Crocsarekewl,
    Thanks for the comment. Where is your WalMart located that still carries Frocs?

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