WR.UP®: A success story
Freddy is an Italian company with a turnover of more than 50 million Euro – which is estimated to increase by at least 10% by the end of 2013 – characterized by a strong personality, a consolidated brand awareness at national and international level, and almost 40 years of experience.
Set up by Carlo Freddi in 1976 with a strong focus on dancewear, the company is currently renowned at global level for its fresh and creative proposals, as well as for its product communication and support strategies.
The latest winning project developed by Freddy is WR.UP®, jersey trousers with an innovative shaping effect. A real and true success story “protected” by six exclusive patents, which is about to celebrate one million items sold by the end of 2013, that is a little more than one year after its first launch in October 2012.
What does the WR.UP® phenomenon mean in terms of project development and figures? Carlo Freddi, founder and soul of the company, answers this question.
When were the WR.UP® trousers first introduced?
The WR.UP® project was introduced to the public at the end of October 2012 – at the Milan single-brand retail store. I said project because WR.UP® was and still is for Freddy much more than just trousers. At the beginning it was a challenge, a collective effort, an investment in terms of creativity and commitment aimed at demonstrating that innovative and added-value projects can be the turning point in these difficult economic times.
Which were your expectations for WR.UP®?
We had great expectations for WR.UP®, as the project was the result of significant investments and of a long design process. However, we could not make any forecasts since this was a unique project on the market. Extremely innovative jersey trousers with a shaping effect, characterized by 6 different patents (protected at global level), made WR.UP® a unique and “stand-alone” product. Hence the difficulty in making forecasts and preparing a business plan building on proven winning strategies, and quantifying the expected results. We were well aware that the end-customer only could give us the answer. Nevertheless, we did have big expectations and above all, we wanted to impress the market once more introducing a completely innovative project: Creativity and innovation, with a fashion-oriented approach, to confirm Freddy’s ability to look ahead. Speaking about figures, we expected to sell 100,000 pieces but, “if we are right” – I told my working team back then – “we can dream of selling even 1,000,000 items”.
One year has gone by and it’s now time to take stock of the situation. How did the public react? Did you sell 100,000 pieces?
One year after the launch of WR.UP®, we can say that our dream came true and by the end of this year we will have sold one million WR.UP® trousers. This was an immediate, global and total success. The experience linked to the WR.UP® concept is destined to grow even further over time.
What about the WR.UP® target audience?
WR.UP® customers do not know borders. This is a sort of globalization spanning from Europe to Asia, from South Korea to Africa up to the Scandinavian countries. Products are sold both in retail stores and online. What really impressed us was the fact that the success WR.UP® achieved abroad is the result of spontaneous word of mouth rather than being driven by a dedicated communication strategy. This means that people just like WR.UP® and that our customers are loyal to us.
What do you mean?
Over the last year we launched several WR.UP® models – the latest being Denim, which I’ll present later on – available in different colours. According to statistical data, customers that had already purchased 5 or 6 pairs of WR.UP® trousers, came back to the shop to buy the latest product.
Did VIPs fall in love with WR.UP® too?
We do not want to exaggerate, but we know that the paparazzi spot Hilary Duff shopping in Los Angeles wearing Freddy’s WR.UP® trousers. This is just one of the many “famous” examples of the WR.UP® success. Beyond the respect and approval of VIPs and celebrities, what matters to us the most is to make sure that our end-customers are 100% satisfied.
Is WR.UP Denim the last step of this success story?
WR.UP® Denim is a further evolution of shaping trousers. “New jeans” made of an innovative bi-elastic fabric in jersey and spandex (80% and 20% respectively) looking like jeans but with the same unrivalled comfort and flexibility provided by jersey. A bi-elastic fabric that shapes the body naturally and comfortably. Easy and comfortable to wear, these “new jeans” are designed to be worn 24/7.
I dare say that this is Freddy’s tribute to Coco Chanel’s quote “Luxury must be comfortable, otherwise it is not luxury”.
The launch is scheduled for October 22nd and is supported by a dedicated communication campaign.
Will WR.UP® Denim be supported by international launches?
Apart from Italy we are focusing on Greece, Russia and United Kingdom with launches in November. Afterwards we will launch the 5th international Pant Room in Antwerp somewhere around March.
What are the investments to support them?
In Italy we planned a campaign involving Radio, TV and Press that will start at the end of October. This is a significant investment made along with the launch on the market of the new product that will be available for sale both in retail stores and on our website.
What are your expectations for WR.UP® Denim?
With this unique Denim product we take on a new challenge. We have no certainties but the tests we have done and the success achieved with the previous WR.UP® models give us reasons to be optimistic. We also tested WR.UP® Denim trousers asking bloggers and celebrities to wear them and their feedback was enthusiastic to say the least.
We think that customers will go on the hunt to get one of the first WR.UP® Denim trousers available.
What about the future?
We will keep going and we already have new projects in store. We are having fun and we are proud that a medium-sized Italian company like ours has managed to challenge the Denim giants.