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Chunky Town: Skechers D’Lites and Toei Animation Collab on the Way

Skechers is extending its anime collaboration to the United States and Canada with the launch of Skechers x One Piece. The colorful collection unites Toei Animation Inc.’s popular anime series with Skechers D’Lites, one of its original styles.

“Pairing the iconic long-running anime series One Piece with one of our top heritage styles resonated with our consumers in South Korea and China who have been driving trends for the past few years,” states Michael Greenberg, president. “And now fashion moves at light speed, so as influencers around the world had already been embracing Skechers D’lites and the chunky sneaker trend, we started to see style purveyors—from Hypebae, Hypebeast, GQ, and High Snobiety—covering Skechers x One Piece collaboration as a must-have style. We knew it was time to introduce the collaboration to the United States and Canada—and fast, and we’re glad it is with Toei Animation, the pioneers of Japanese animation.”

Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece is the best-selling manga in history with more than 430 million copies worldwide. In 1997, it spawned an acclaimed anime series that has produced 890-plus episodes. Following the adventures of Monkey D. Luffy and his fearless Straw Hat Pirates, fans are taken on a fantastical journey across a world teeming with wonders and imagination. A multi-generational property, it continues to captivate viewers both young and old. The story and its characters have also expanded across other media into film, TV and video/mobile game as well as theme park in Japan.

“As one of the most respected footwear brands in the world, we’re excited to partner with Skechers in launching this exciting fashion initiative in the United States and Canada,” says Masayuki Endo, president of Toei Animation Inc. “Skechers D’Lites embrace the energy and enthusiasm of our fans, who like One Piece’s Straw Hat Pirates, are always on the move looking for life’s next adventure.”

The collection will be imported in six colorways, each embracing a unique One Piece character: Luffy, Chopper, Sanji, Zoro, Law and Doflamingo. It will be available beginning this July at Skechers stores and online and in select specialty stores.

Skechers pioneered the chunky sneaker look two decades ago with the Skechers Energy for men and women as well as the Skechers Stamina for men. The company introduced Skechers D’Lites—a lighter version of its original style—in 2007. Though the collection has always had a dedicated consumer base, sales accelerated across Asia over the last two years after regional marketing included K-Pop groups. In 2017, Skechers relaunched an even lighter update of its D’Lites in celebration of its 10-year anniversary.

The April/May 2024 Issue

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