FFS CEO Tom Romeo cites 'tremendous opportunity for growth' of the franchise
Citrus Heights, CA /PRNewswire/ - Casual footwear retailer Flip Flop Shops (FFS) - recently acquired by BEARPAW Holdings LLC - has secured premier specialty retailer, kiosk and pop-up experts International Retail Management and Consulting Group LLC (IRG) to develop a common area retail model. FFS currently has more than 60 brick-and-mortar franchises across the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean.
Headquartered in Las Vegas, IRG is led by founder/CEO Linda Johansen-James, CRX, CLS; Jeff Pappas covers new business development for IRG on this project. IRG evolved from the largest owner-operated specialty retailer in the world, American Kiosk Management (AKM) which proudly served over 52 million guests, amassing more than $1.7 billion in sales for Proactiv®, the company's most prominent client. Bringing IRG into the fold is part of an aggressive expansion strategy spearheaded by new FFS CEO Tom Romeo.
"We acquired FFS recognizing a tremendous opportunity for growth," Romeo said. "To realize that potential, we are establishing new franchise models and we are thrilled to align with a team as respected and established in this industry as Linda and Jeff."
"We like to partner with the best brands - of which FFS is one - and assist them in growing their business," said IRG's Johansen-James and Pappas in a joint statement. "We are retailers at heart and feel that we can be a value-add to the already fabulous team at FFS."
Known for its curation of the hottest brands and most current styles, "Flip Flop Shops is about freeing your vibe, finding the right statement and fit for you," Romeo said. "Sometimes, you're on the go and want to make it quick, but the culture and quality can never be compromised. IRG got that immediately." Romeo noted that IRG will provide support in designing the new FFS kiosks and will actively recruit new franchisees for the brick-and-mortar shops as well.
Among the advances at hand since the BEARPAW acquisition is the evolution of the FFS model to "flip" seasonally where appropriate, meeting customers' needs in winter and year-round. The common area retail model is expected to reflect these seasonal shifts, where appropriate. "We are still working on the assortment, but our kiosks will be omnichannel," Johansen-James explained. "The FFS online portal allows us to access product that may not be available on site, and we can ship directly to the customer or back to the store."
FFS and IRG envision a Summer '19 launch for the common area retail model, with more details expected soon.
About Flip Flop Shops
Founded in 2004, Flip Flop Shops® is an authentic retailer exclusively devoted to curating quality flip flops, casual footwear and accessories for the beach and beyond. Flip Flop Shops promotes a casual, healthy, stress-free lifestyle, recognizing that everyone deserves to find happiness and peace of mind on life's journey. Through products, experiential retail and marketing, Flip Flop Shops encourages everyone to "Free Your Vibe."
Flip Flop Shops has been awarded the International Council of Shopping Centers' prestigious "Hot Retailer Award" and has ranked multiple times on the Inc. 500|5000 lists of America's fastest-growing franchise companies. The company operates shops globally through its franchise platform.
About International Retail Management and Consulting Group
International Retail Group (IRG) is a trusted leader in direct-to-consumer retail operations, pop-up locations and carts and kiosks for some of the world's top brands, perfecting the art of specialty retail marketing with direct experience in the operation of more than 1,000 locations and automated retail locations throughout the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Headquartered in Las Vegas, IRG evolved from the largest owner-operated specialty retailer in the world, American Kiosk Management (AKM) which proudly served over 52 million guests, amassing more than $1.7 billion in sales for Proactiv®, the company's most prominent client. Their customized specialty retail marketing includes testing, launching and operating multiple pop-ups, carts and kiosks for leading companies, including Guthy-Renker, One Two Cosmetics®, ABC Mouse, Solar City, Vivint Solar, One Two Cosmetics, Blue Moon Hemp and Swiss Relief and Hess Toy Trucks.