Ecco Intrinsic: Stepping In To A Different Class
It’s Time To Rethink Your Teachers’ Footwear With Ecco’s New Intrinsic Sneakers
Ecco might not be the first name that springs to mind when the subject turns to cool sneakers. In fact, outside their target audience (which, we’ll wager does not include hardcore denimheads) it is perhaps more synonymous with bearded geography teachers on wet and windy field trips or junior doctors and their never-ending shifts. Comfort is king while being on-trend is as good as irrelevant.
However, things look set to change. With the new Intrinsic collection, Ecco is squaring up to a younger, more style-conscious market and launches key styles for summer 2016.
The Ecco Intrinsic Is Aimed At A New Audience For the Brand
Led by Ecco-lifer Niki Tæstensen – he joined the business at the tender age of sixteen – the design team has developed a radical new train of thought which draws heavily upon skate culture and the urban street scene, and applied the innovative technology that is at the heart of everything they do.
We have had a pair (pictured) on road-test now for the best part of a month, biking and rolling around the Berlin summer streets in temperatures touching 40°C while trying to dodge biblical storms and flash-floods. Not a scratch!
They have even had an outing at Berlin Fashion Week (and we all know what a bitch-fest trade shows can be) where not one industry insider correctly guessed the brand. Vans came up on more than one occasion. More importantly, they received a pretty universal thumbs-up and even enjoyed the blessing of our own footwear guru, Michael van Hal. High praise, indeed.
And why not? For over half a century, Ecco has been in the business and building undeniably world-leading brand with a presence in 88 countries and with more than 14,000 sales points. Impressive stuff. But, and it’s a big “but”, there is still an old school feel to the business.
Style Without Compromise
Ecco is still family-owned and, like Red Wing for example, it is one of the few major shoe manufacturers in the world that owns and manages every aspect of its leather and shoe production, while also being among the largest producers of high quality leather which they white label to customers including several of the world’s leading luxury brands.
Perhaps, it is those Scandinavian genes again. Doing things well rather than coming over all Kanye about your own talents.
However, if Ecco are going to make in-roads in to the viciously competitive core sneaker market with Intrinsic, they will need to tackle some very substantial and established main players. Brand loyalties are fierce in this sector and notoriously difficult to budge.
On the evidence so far, though – the styling, the versatility, the build – at least they have a dog in that fight.
The Ecco Intrinsic will be released for summer 2016. The price is still to be announced.