Acquisition of Just the Right Shoe(JTRS)

February 24, 2010 Evergreen Enterprises, Inc. 0 Comments

Just the Right Shoe (JTRS) is an 11-12 year old brand started by a California company called Willits and acquired by Department 56, a well-known wholesaler in the collectible market. Their business model is quite different from Evergreen’s; in the collectibles market, every product created is usually numbered with limited editions and brand popularity must catch on very quickly to have a following. Once you have established your core customer base interested in your product type, you have a built-in customer base established for the production of continued variances of additional products in that collectible line.

The collectibles’ market really comes to its own with big names like Disney and Warner Brothers. A great number of production artists are from California, as is Lorraine Vail, the JTRS artist. These product design artists focus a large percentage of their product development time on product details and facets. You will only be making a certain amount, and the intricacy is crucial, not the speed, efficiency, or cost saving in the production.

For the mass market producers, like Evergreen, it’s more about being able to quickly and efficiently produce large quantities of products with good quality, while being able to maintain competitive pricing at that level.

Department 56 was a good match for Lorraine Vail’s product line early on in the collection’s life; but as JTRS popularity grew, Lorraine sought a venue which would allow her to more readily grow her product line and her popularity. Lorraine’s agent brought the concept to Evergreen’s owners, Frank Qiu and Ting Xu, as well as the Vice President of Product Development, Greg Jones. Since Evergreen has not been in the collectible industry, it was a delicate decision for the team.

Because of Evergreen’s relationship with retailers in the gift industry, it provided a great opportunity for Lorraine to more quickly and effectively extend the product line to these retailers who had a firmly developed market to collectibles consumers. Additionally, because of the fan base that JTRS had already developed, it was a great match for Evergreen’s retailers, as well, to be provided with a pre-existing end-consumer segment in collectibles.

Evergreen was also able to acquire existing inventory to immediately provide the selection to the retailers and began working hand in hand with Lorraine to develop new product prototypes and begin the manufacturing process through our teams of highly detailed and hand-craftsman.

Terry Rhyne
Product Line Manager, Cape Craftsmen