3 December 2014, Written by Jenna Rathbone


HELLO Kitty has pounced on the Gold Coast with its first ever Australian collaboration.

The global fashion icon today launched an exclusive collection of sheepskin ugg boots in partnership with Miami-headquartered retailer and manufacturer UGG Since 1974.

Todd Watts, production manager of UGG Since 1974, says they were approached by Hello Kitty to form the partnership and believes it is the quality and diversity of the company’s products that attracted the designer.

“They approached us to partner with them and I think they came to us because we are Australian owned from start to finish, everything is made here,” he says.

“We looked at it as a fantastic opportunity to join a company that has standards as high as ours in terms of quality and representation.

“It made us feel that our presence overseas is strong and well known and it really lifted us in terms of people seeing us as a high-quality manufacturer of ugg boots and one of the only manufacturers of ugg boots in Australia.”

He says although Hello Kitty is not as well-known and as popular on the Gold Coast, the new partnership will be attractive to holidaymakers, and local residents will grow to love the brand.

“For the local market it is an eye opener, it is something exciting moving forward and will really attract the tourists which is great for the Gold Coast community,” says Watts.

“We are expecting quite a big uprise in terms of people buying Hello Kitty ugg boots because it is one of a kind and it hasn’t been done before.”

The range is designed to encompass the Australian lifestyle, drawing inspiration from Australian surf, urban chic and bohemian cultures to create unique designs for Australian women and children.

Hello Kitty lead designer Yuko Yamaguchi travelled to Australia for the first time to reveal the new products which also go hand in hand with both companies’ 40th anniversaries.

Ms Yamaguchi says it is great to be in Australia and grow the Hello Kitty brand on the Gold Coast.

“It is a great partnership when both brands are very popular and known globally, so it was a very good fit to partner with UGG Since 1974,” she says.

“Hello Kitty is not as popular in Australia as other countries, however hopefully as years go by there will be more Hello Kitty products in Australia.

“Right now we are only doing the boots but I hope we can grow to do bags and other products that UGG offers.”

UGG Since 1974 is a family business that manufacturers all ugg boots out of its Miami warehouse.

Author: Jenna Rathbone
About: Jenna Rathbone is a Queensland-based journalist who writes on a range of issues including business and property affairs and social issues.
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