Proving that star power is no substitute for good taste, the latest Steph Curry-branded shoe from Under Armour is shaping up to be a big letdown — and the company's stock price is feeling the heat. ESPN reports that Foot Locker CEO Dick Johnson said sales of the recently debuted Curry 3s "started off a bit slower than the previous models." This observation from the footwear retailer was enough to spur close to $600 million in stock losses for Under Armour as the company's stock dipped four percent.
The line of shoes, named after the two-time NBA MVP, have been roundly mocked in the past for looking like footwear preferred by retirees over pro-athletes. Whether the design of the latest model, or the fact that following the Golden State Warriors' disappointing championship performance some of the shine may have worn off the team, is causing the decline in sales is unclear. However, as Business of Fashion quotes Johnson as explaining, the shoes could still be in for a come back. “But again," he told those gathered on an earnings call about the lagging sales, "it’s early days.”
Under Armour has pinned big hopes on the $140 shoe, with Sporting News reporting that Curry is Under Armour most high-profile endorser with his products consisting of roughly five percent of the company's annual business.
ESPN notes that part of the problem could be Curry's personal footwear choices — he reportedly wears high-tops to protect his ankles while playing, however the best selling basketball shoes are worn for fashion purposes and low-tops seem to be favored among the style-seeking consumer.
Footwear News, meanwhile, has a counterintuitive suggestion for Under Armour to improve sales: Don't make the Curry 3s so readily available. “Oftentimes what happens that prevents a program from selling well is that there’s too much of the old stuff left," sports industry analyst Matt Powell told the publication. "This market really thrives on scarcity, so the idea would be to make it more scarce.”
Got that, dads everywhere? Buy up your Curry 3s now as they may be a lot harder to get down the line.