STREET SMARTS: Contemporary meets sportswear in the new K-Way and Kappa collaboration, which launched Wednesday in London. The two heritage brands have teamed up for a one-off and one-of-a-kind collaboration in a bid to tap into each other’s consumer market.
According to Dre Hayes, president of Kappa USA and K-Way USA, the collaboration and the collection came together very naturally. “So many times when brands do collaborations, one brand dominates and what’s interesting is that while Kappa has dominated every other collaboration it’s been involved in, this time around you don’t see that. It’s a really good balance and representation of both brands.”
The pieces are designed with K-Way’s classic silhouettes, and include a full-zip jacket, a pullover and a jumpsuit all featuring K-Way’s trademark rainbow stripe and Kappa’s Omini logo. The collection retails from $119 to $132.
The collaboration launched with a buzzy social media campaign featuring British influencer Ari Petrou, who has a following of more than 320,000 Instagram followers.
For both brands, the collaboration is a way to elevate their status in weaker markets. “Kappa is very hot with this heritage sportswear trend going around and K-Way is doing really well in Europe and this collaboration has definitely changed the perception of K-Way in the U.S. by adding Kappa’s street elements to it,” Hayes said.
Hayes is confident that the partnership will help K-Way become more popular in the U.S. while Kappa will strengthen its presence in the U.K. and France.
From the collection, the pants, which come in 22 colorways, have garnered widespread appeal from the U.S. and the U.K. markets. “I’ve noticed that the U.S. and the U.K. are very similar as far as having different cultures and communities and the prevalence of street culture and that tastes in interests are very similar,” Hayes said.