Vans is a Southern California-based manufacturer of sneakers, skateboarding shoes and other shoe types catering primarily to the skateboarder/surfer youth market. It was started in 1966 by Paul Van Doren, Jim Van Doren, Serge D'Elia, and Gordy Lee on 704E Broadway in Los Angeles, CA. It was originally known as Van Doren Rubber Company.
First store was situated in Anaheim, California. Later it moved overseas in 1994. Vans shoes were produced in the store but later American production of Vans shoes ended in July 1995. Then it started taking customer orders when people wanted different color schemes on their shoes.
In the beginning, Vans designed their shoes with a diamond tread. But later on during heavy use the middle part of each shoe cracked and fell apart. Thus it prompted Vans to add vertical lines in the tread to increase strength, friction and grip. Such tread was officially named the "waffle-sole."
Currently, Vans is Leading global sports & Life Style Company which is available in the surfing, skateboarding, and snowboarding, urban and punk markets. Market is segmented for men, women and children. Company focuses on core sports: BMX riding, Snowboarding, Skateboarding & more. The brand is popular over the last two years for its much-loved slip-on. Its main products are Rowely XLT, the Cardiel 2, the TNT, the classics but the company has also marketed additional items such as clothing and skateboarding accessories.
B. Indentifying Problems
There were many issues facing the different executives that held the reigns of Vans leadership over the years of the life of the company. Some of the leading problems that were identified are:
1. The small market niche Vans held when it first started. At first, the only people who wore Vans were a small segment of the southern California surfer population. But later on it grow to neighboring communities in school cheer teams and sports teams.
2. The decision of James... [continues]
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