On Tuesday, Crocs (NASDAQ: CROX) signed six college athletes to NIL deals. During 2023, the endorsees will create customized social content for the brand.
The athletes span multiple sports and hail from across the nation:
- Armando Bacot: University of North Carolina Men’s Basketball
- Claire Curzan: Stanford University Swimming
- Deja Kelly: University of North Carolina Women’s Basketball
- Suni Lee: Auburn University Gymnastics
- Jared McCain: Duke University Men’s Basketball Commit
- Julian Strawther: Gonzaga University Men’s Basketball
NCAA men’s and women’s sport athletes are equally represented amongst the group. This comes when a recent report by Opendorse found that only 22.9% of NIL compensation goes to women’s sport athletes.
Crocs’ popularity has soared in recent years. Morning Consult found the Colorado-based casual lifestyle footwear company to be the second fastest growing brand in 2022. Launched in 2002, the company has sold 850 million pairs of shoes globally and its products are sold in 85 countries.
Following news of the company’s NIL partnerships, Crocs’ stock price opened $1.37 higher on Wednesday from Tuesday’s close of $121.71. In 2022, Crocs reported record revenue of $3.55 billion, up 150% year-over year and over 250% from 2020.
And the growth isn’t stopping. The company projects a 13% revenue increase in 2023.
Generation Z is driving sales for Crocs. In 2021, the company acquired casual footwear brand Hey Dude for $2.5 billion. Wall Street didn’t celebrate the deal, but Gen Z did. The Italian footwear brand is largely worn by the younger generation. Last year, roughly one-third of Crocs’ revenue was driven by Hey Dude sales.
Understanding the consumption preferences of Generation Z can breathe new energy–and revenue–into a brand. The college athletes Crocs has partnered with–and their wide social media followings and abilities to engage the generation’s members–may further expand Crocs’ revenue.
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