Since its launch in 2010, Swedish-based brand Stutterheim has quickly become a leading purveyor of rainwear, even getting co-signs from celebrities like Jay-Z, Lorde, and, of course, Kanye West.
But in a recent interview with Fast Company, co-founder and marketing director Johan Loman says celebrity endorsement is just one small factor in the brand’s success. He even went as far as saying that Kanye had a very little impact on its sales.
"Maybe he will call me now and be angry,” Loman told Fast Company. “[Celebrities] are an asset within PR […] We get a lot of exposure, we have very high standards and we want to be in press all of the time, we expect nothing less. And we scream out loud when we see Kanye West [wearing Stutterheim], it’s so amazing—but then it is on to the next one."
According to Fast Company, the brand is expected to bring in about $6.5 million this year, with a profit margin of 15 percent. Its rubberized cotton outerwear can be found in over 700 stores across the world, including luxury hotspots like Barneys New York and Selfridges in London. That’s some pretty impressive growth for a brand that was inspired by an old, dusty rain coat.
While looking through items in a family barn, founder Alexander Stutterheim discovered a garment worn by his grandfather. The style was on point, the quality was incredible, and it was nothing like Stutterheim had seen in contemporary stores. So he decided he’d update the look and created 200 rain coats based on the design. And it didn’t take long for people to recognize just how well-made the garments were, as the initial batch sold out soon after its launch.
"If someone looked at how we were producing our coats in the beginning to now, they would have a really hard time finding a difference,” said Loman, who also explained how quality is best means of advertisement. “If you see the product, it is functional, it is extremely interesting in terms of aesthetic and craftsmanship. Because it is such a functional product it caters to many people but that does not mean that our brand building has to cater to all of those people because the product itself is our strongest marketing tool."
You can check out the entire feature at Fast Company’s website, in which Loman discusses everything from the brand's melancholic aesthetic to social media presence to its Swedish sensibilities.