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Backgrounder

In: Other Topics

Submitted By jcarr147
Words 431
Pages 2
Janice Carrillo
PUR 4106

TOMS Backgrounder

TOMS, a for-profit company, sells and designs shoes based on the Argentine alpargata design as well as eyewear. TOMS is behind the idea One for One, a global movement where the company donates a pair of TOMS to a child in a developing country when a pair of TOMS is sold, also; when the company sells a pair of eyewear, part of the profit is used to save or restore the eyesight for people in developing countries. It was founded in 2006 by president and co-founder, Blake Mycoskie.
Mycoskie first traveled to Argentina when he competed in the second season of “The Amazing Race” with his sister. He returned to Argentina in early 2006 for vacation and noticed that local polo players were wearing a simple slip-on canvas shoe constructed of rubber. Later on in his trip, Mycoskie decided to do some volunteer work in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, and he witnessed the hardships children without shoes faced. He realized that the lack of shoes was not only a problem in Argentina, but also in other developing countries; therefore, he decided to develop his own style of alpargata in the North America market, with the hopes that when one pair of shoes was sold, one would be given to an underprivileged child.
Mycoskie presented his idea to various Argentine shoe manufacturers and created the company TOMS. Originally, he made 250 pairs of shoes. In May 2006, the company began to sell its shoes. An article written in the Los Angeles Times helped the company receive order requests for nine times the available stock online. During the first six months, 10,000 pairs of TOMS were sold, and 10,000 pairs of TOMS were delivered to underprivileged children in Argentina. A year later, the company launched the annual "One Day Without Shoes" event. Participants of the event walk around barefoot throughout the day to raise awareness for Toms' mission. The company landed various awards that include the Secretary of State’s 2009 Award of Corporate Excellence (ACE), and it was featured in the Bill Gates Time Magazine article “How to Fix Capitalism.” Over 500 retailers carried TOMS globally by 2011. In the same year, the company launched its eyewear line to help save or restore sight for those in need. By 2012, the company donated over 2 million pairs of shoes to children in developing countries around the world. Since the company was created in 2006, the company has gifted over 10 million pairs of new TOMS to children in dire need.…...

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