NEWLY MINTED PARTNER: BeachMint and Aldo Group are going into business together. The e-commerce company has secured Aldo as a long-term manufacturing partner to make shoes for its footwear-focused vertical ShoeMint. Aldo, which is taking an equity stake in BeachMint, replaces Steve Madden as ShoeMint’s manufacturing partner. “The beauty of ShoeMint is that it is a brand that is positioned in a very similar way to our Aldo brand – beautiful leather-based fashion footwear at mid level prices,” said David Bensadoun, president of Aldo group retail and Aldo product services. Josh Berman, co-founder and chief executive officer of BeachMint, said working with Aldo would allow BeachMint to decrease its inventory risk and increaseShoeMint’s selection.
“We are going to test offline retail with some of our ShoeMint product through their distribution channels,” he explained. ShoeMint is now releasing eight to 10 new shoe styles per month and that number will soon jump to around 30 per month priced mostly from $70 to $200. “The number one reason why customers aren’t purchasing again is we don’t have enough stuff,” said Berman. “What we have learned is we needed to have much more assortment.” The deal with Aldo is the latest in a number of deals that BeachMint has struck recently. It has also launched lingerie line IntiMint by Cosabella, and made Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen co-chairs of its advisory board. Cosabella and the Olsen sisters hold equity stakes in BeachMint as well. Berman called Aldo’s stake in BeachMint “the most meaningful.” He said, “We are very bullish on our shoe business. It is one of the biggest markets for BeachMint. The desire and demand for our shoes has grown dramatically, and we are going to invest heavily in2014 in television and other media to further grow ShoeMint.”