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Thursday, November 4, 2021

Tim Brown: The Magician Behind Allbirds’ Meteoric Rise

With revenue of 100.2 million in 2019, Allbirds is one of the most eco-friendly footwear manufacturers in the world. The company came into the limelight after launching the Wool Runner shoe, manufactured by the delicate merino wool from New Zealand. 

In October 2018, Allbirds procured Series C funding to the tune of $50 million, enhancing its overall valuation to $1.4 billion. 

About Allbirds: The brainchild of Tim Brown and Joey Zwillinger

Allbirds is a footwear manufacturer and designer based in the United States and New Zealand. The company constantly focuses on making eco-friendly products. Allbirds is a Certified B Corporation which means it bears the certification of “social and environmental performance”. The footwear manufacturer came up with an innovative idea of making their products with the fiber of the eucalyptus tree. In 2020, Allbirds introduced their opening apparel line for both men and women manufactured with eco-friendly stuff. 

Allbirds was founded in 2014. The headquarters of the company is located in San Francisco, California. The concept of setting up a unique footwear brand came to Tim’s mind at the time when he was the vice-captain of the Kiwi soccer team. Earlier, Tim completed his business management studies and had a passion for manufacturing leather footwear for his friends. However, at the same time, he was conscious of their discomfort factor. 

In 2014, he obtained a research scholarship from the wool manufacturing sector of New Zealand for devising a running shoe. Subsequently, he introduced his concept on Kickstarter and within just five days, procured $119,000 as funding. Following the introduction on Kickstarter, Tim joined hands with Joey Zwillinger, a renewable materials scientist and a biotechnology engineer. Both the founders started building their procedures and formally introduced Allbirds in March 2016. 

During the opening year of their commercial operations, Allbirds procured $990.25 million from venture capital companies like LererHippeau Ventures, Maveron, and other companies.

The name of the company, “Allbirds”, is an acknowledgement of how there are no indigenous land mammals in the territory of New Zealand. It was always a territory of “all birds”.

Allbirds filed a lawsuit against Steve Madden in December 2017, accusing that the Traveler range of footwear launched by the manufacturer had striking resemblances with its Wool Runner range of footwear.

Till 2017, Allbirds recruited 50 staff in their San Francisco head office. The Nashville storage warehouse houses 40 employees. In South Korea, there were 350 freelancers in a manufacturing hub. 

By 2018 October, the company traded a stake to the venture capitalists at an estimation of $1.4 billion.

The company proclaimed a collaboration with Adidas in May 2020.

Tim Brown was constantly familiar with the charming qualities of merino wool. He was naturally inquisitive and he started questioning himself why such an extraordinary and eco-friendly material was not used in the footwear manufacturing industry. With this inquisitiveness, the voyage of Allbirds took off.

It took years of research and random activities to come into reality. After teaming up with Joey Zwillinger, they collectively created a ground-breaking wool textile manufactured particularly for the footwear industry. The result? A wholly unique type of shoes motivated by natural fabric along with a constant motto for making improved products in an improved manner. 

The Product line of Allbirds

Initially, the company worked with just one product, the Wool Runner. They are casual running shoes or sneakers. Slowly, the company has grown its product range with flip-flops or backless sandals, and other varieties of running shoes.

Shoes 

  • Tree Dasher – Daily Running Shoe
  • Wool Runner – Comfortable Sneaker
  • Tree Runner – Lightweight and Airy Sneaker

Apparel

  • TrinoXO™ Tee – Naturally Gentle Tee
  • Wool Cardi – Long – Comfortable Double Knit Long Cardigan 
  • Wool Hoodie – Comfortable Double Knit Hoodie

Basics

  • Trino™ Boxer Brief – Breathable Supportive Innerwear
  • Trino™ Brief -Mid-Rise Hiphugger Innerwear
  • Socks – Airy Ankle Sock

There are some new arrivals on Allbirds’ shelf and they are 

  • Women’s Tree Breezer – Bough, Limited Edition Color 
  • Women’s Tree Dasher – Gaia, Limited Edition Color 
  • Men’s Tree Dasher – Terra, Limited Edition Color 
  • Men’s Tree Runner – Mist, Classic Color 
  • Women’s Wool Runner – Ironbark, Limited Edition Color
  • Women’s Tree Runner – Aspen, Limited Edition Color 
  • Women’s Wool Runner Fluff – Natural White, Limited Edition Color 
  • Women’s Wool Dasher Mizzle – Natural Black, Limited Edition Color
  • Men’s Wool Dasher Mizzle Mid – Mist, Limited Edition Color  
  • Women’s Wool Runner Mizzle – Savannah Night, Limited Edition Color
  • Women’s Wool Lounger – Natural White, Classic Color 
  • Men’s Wool Runner Mizzle – Bough, Limited Edition Color

The salient benefit offered by the official website of Allbirds is that you can shop by categories such as men’s shoes, women’s shoes, men’s apparel, women’s apparel, and socks.

Eco-friendly products are the USP of Allbirds

Allbirds designs all its products with eco-friendly natural substances such as eucalyptus trees and merino wool since these are the best options for a viable future.

Collaborations

Allbirds has entered into partnerships with other brands to manufacture limited-edition items, such as Nordstrom and Outdoor Voices.

Retail operations of Allbirds

Till January 2021, Allbirds has opened retail outlets in nations including the United States, New Zealand, France, the Netherlands, Germany, the United Kingdom, China, South Korea, and Japan.

Why Allbirds’ products are so popular

1) Minimalism in design

Allbirds’ products don’t feature meaningless niceties or glitzy insignia. Only the coziest shoes in the world are naturally manufactured and planned logically. Tim Brown made it that easy.  

2) Trust in the coziness 

Attempting is trusting. The company offers a free trial for the customers for 30 days, and if the customer is not fully satisfied, they’ll take them back and the customer will not be facing any questions.

3) Natural products

Conventionally, the footwear manufacturing industry ignored the substances available on Mother Nature’s lap. Instead, it preferred more affordable and artificial substitutes. Tim Brown and Joey Zwillinger thought that there was a time to shift over.

Moments of pride

The voyage to manufacture improved products in an improved manner has been an extensive one for Allbirds. Tim Brown and Joey Zwillinger still believe that they have just begun even after 7 years. Given below are some moments of pride for the company:

1) B Corp

As a B Corp certification holder, the company carries out its business in a distinct way. They consider the environment as an investor here, and how they take care of it is exclusively as crucial as the outcome.   

2) SOLES4SOULS®

Courtesy to their associates at Soles4Souls®, less utilized Allbirds shoes get new life throughout the globe, aiding poverty-stricken communities prosper in the procedure.

3) Recycled Packaging

Footwear packaging has been redefined by Allbirds. They rethought the way of packaging footwear, utilizing 90% post-customer recycled cardboard that can work as a shopping bag, shoebox, and carton all-in-one.

Sustainability 

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.” ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt 

This is the quote in which Allbirds believes. They have a steady strategy to cut down the carbon footprint of their items and it is in the implementation phase now. Initially, they measure the extent of emissions from their raw materials to end-products. Subsequently, they lower their effect by including natural and recycled substances. Ultimately, they offset the nominal amount that is remaining via carbon offsets, turning Allbirds into an entirely carbon-neutral enterprise. 


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Kiara Dawson
Kiara Dawson comes from an Engineering background, with a specialization in Information Technology. She has a keen interest and expertise in Web Development, Data Analytics, and Research. She trusts in the process of growth through knowledge and hard work.

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