New Zealand shoe manufacturer and retailer Ziera is expanding its e-commerce presence, transforming its range, and boosting its leadership team to accommodate its growth plans.
The brand, which combines technology and fashion to create women’s shoes that are both comfortable and stylish, will now be sold through the hugely-popular online retailer The Iconic’s marketplace channel. Ziera also has a new Head of Product Design on board – Rosie Jamieson, who has more than 20 years’ experience in footwear creation, much of it in her native United Kingdom with brands such as Hush Puppies, Sacha London, Hotter and other leading fashion retailers. Her commitment to designing shoes with world-class comfort engineering hidden inside stylish uppers has seen a reinvention of the Ziera range.
Andrew Robertson, the third generation of his family to run Ziera, is now Chairman and has appointed Martin Bremner as Chief Executive. Bremner was previously CEO of Super Liquor Holdings, and is highly-regarded as a change management specialist, having helped transform a range of companies in New Zealand and off-shore.
“These developments are all part of the transformation Ziera is undergoing,” says Robertson. “We are evolving from a traditional bricks-and-mortar specialty retailer to a digital-first omni-channel business, and Martin is leading the charge on our growth strategy.”
Since Bremner joined late last year, Ziera’s online sales have increased by 33% and the website is now its single biggest “store”. About 70% of turnover is generated in Australia.
In New Zealand, the company has also forged an exclusive trading relationship with Foot Mechanics, which has 17 podiatrists working across 17 clinics throughout the country. Each clinic will offer a core Ziera range instore and direct access to the website, making them one of Ziera’s biggest wholesale customers in New Zealand.
“We will always have flagship stores on the ground where customers can come in, check out the range and get fitted properly. But, once we have customised their footprint, their details can be stored online and they can then also buy with confidence from one of our digital channels,” says Robertson.
This approach means the company will need fewer high street stores but the ones it does have will be in top locations and offer superb customer experience. Consequently, three stores in Australia will close in July once their leases expire. They are in Bridge Road in Melbourne, Garden City in Brisbane, and Orange in New South Wales.
“Exciting times lie ahead for Ziera as we transform our business into an omni-channel retailer that provides customers with a convenient and easy experience, allowing them to shop however and whenever they choose,” says Robertson.
Ziera is a leading shoe brand based in New Zealand that designs, manufactures and retails footwear. Founded in 1946 with a mission to create comfortable and good-looking footwear, it operates its own stores in New Zealand and Australia, supplies independent retailers in 10 countries and has a rapidly-growing online store at zierashoes.com