Insight into shoe brand success
What does it take tomake it in highly competitive international markets?
CroweHorwath’s INSPIRE Women in Business team, in partnership with business development organisation The Icehouse, is soon to deliver the answer, along with a hefty dose of inspiration.
The team is hosting acclaimed shoe designer and businesswoman Kathryn Wilson, who is to speak at the group’s midyear event in June.
The Crowe Horwath INSPIRE Women in Business group was started in 2013 byMichelle Valler and Wendy Hutchins, both managers and business advisors at CroweHorwath in Hastings.
The group quickly expanded into the Napier area, boosted by Crowe Horwath Ahuriri office opening. The company’s Central Hawke’s Bay office also runs aWomen in Business networking group, and the concept has since reached Auckland, with groupsmeeting each month to listen to a range of speakers.
Kathryn Wilson has established herself asNew Zealand’s premier footwear designer in just a decade, growing from a fledgling designer to becoming an influential businesswomanwith a brand that is in high demand. Presenting to INSPIRE Women, Kathrynwill share her brand story, the design process and trends.
“We’re delighted to have secured Kathryn as a speaker,” says Wendy Hutchins.
“The fashion world is notoriously difficult to break into, brands are international and winning the hearts and minds of clientele in this environment is a Herculean task. Kathryn has taken that on and succeeded. Her insights are bound to resonate with our guests— and of course, we’ll hope to see some great shoes, too,”
Kathryn’s story is remarkable.
After graduating from Massey University and winning anAMP Scholarship, she honed her design skills and set about creating her own line of footwear. In 2003, under the guidance of successful New Zealand design house Caroline Sills, Kathryn Wilson the labelwas born. Since then, Kathryn Wilson has emerged as one of the fastest-growing fashion brands in New Zealand. Stocked in over 100 local boutiques and with an ever-growing online market, the label is on the front foot in the fashion industry.
Beyond design, Kathryn is recognised for her business acumen which has earned her recognition and brand ambassador status, garnering the attention of global brands like BMW, Veuve Clicquot, Orly, San Pellegrino, Vodafone and Moroccanoil.
Crowe Horwath has recently been working closely with The Icehouse on projects as their regional business partner, saysKate de Lautour from The Icehouse Hawke’s Bay.
“Over the last two years we have seen a significant increase in the number ofwomen in Icehouse programmes, including the Owner Operator Programme in Hawke’s Bay and the Owner Manager Programme inAuckland, and these owners are certainly punching above their weight on a national level,” she says.
Kate notes that fashion outlets inHawke’s Bay have carried Wilson’s shoes for more than a decade, with localwomen keen followers of her ontrend styles.
“Kathryn’s story will resonate with our innovative and futurefocused Hawke’s Bay businesswomen. We’re thrilled to be a part of this event, particularly now thatwe’re hosting a speaker with the profile and accomplishments that Kathryn brings with her.”
SUCCESSFUL: Acclaimed shoe designer and businesswoman Kathryn Wilson will speak in Havelock North this month.