Take a slice on me: couple find success by serving up pizza socks
A power couple is sending the internet into meltdown over their deliciously packed pizza socks.
Presented in a takeaway box and lovingly folded to resemble pizza slices, the stylish pepperoni socks have been making internet shoppers double take since they hit the market last year. Purchasable by the ‘pie’ (4 pairs) or by the slice (1 pair) business owners Cyprian and Magda Iwuć have has now sold an estimated 50,000 boxes of Pizza Box Socks in over 30 countries.
Trend hunters and pizza lovers, the pair set up their sock company four years ago. In the beginning their company, Socks Place, specialised in sushi boxed socks tailored for fans of the Japanese delicacy.
“At the time sushi restaurants were opening up all over Poland, and it was becoming hugely popular amongst Poles,” Socks Place CEO, Cyprian Iwuć, told TFN.
A self-confessed sushi enthusiast himself, Iwuć had already grown a sushi dedicated Facebook page of 50,000 people.
“The socks idea came to me completely by accident,” he added. “I made a joke, ‘maybe we can make sushi socks and sell them via our Facebook page?’ It took us half a year to make the first prototypes of Sushi Box Socks. It came onto the market into December 2014 and was very successful in Poland.”
Since then, the couple have moved on to produce other nutritional socks such as Jar Socks and egg socks before moving on to their best-selling idea of Pizza Box Socks.
The quirky footwear has proved a solid hit in the US market, especially as pepperoni pizza is one of the most ordered foods in America. Iwuć explained his company can’t seem to ship them in fast enough for the ‘pie’ loving population and because of this frequent air deliveries have to be made.
Conquering the e-commerce market via Amazon, the couple have built their sock business in four years, and now ship to major European markets such as Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the UK as well as the US.
Cyprian adds his sock success is helped in part by a rising trend amongst professionals in 2018.
“Very often, colourful socks are being worn by men in smart suits because it hints something about your personally. With socks you can say, hey! I'm a nice guy, I'm a joker, I’m approachable,” he explained.
“For many years socks were just a small part of an outfit. Nowadays socks are open to the public. They’ve become more and more popular as a fashion statement.”
As well as filling a fashion vacuum, the jazzy socks are also proving popular for other reasons.
The high quality Oeko Tex certified cotton paired with everyday usefulness and intriguing packaging make the Pizza Box Socks a fun gift idea for a lot of consumers.
“People around the world believe that European quality is very high,” added the sock seller. “And high quality is very important to Polish people. With our socks we meet the practical aspect of the gift, and also we add a little surprise to someone with our packaging. When they receive it they have no idea about what it could be, they get confused.”
But Cyprian doesn’t aim to just make great gifts. The Socks Place company also sells fashionable socks specially made for diabetics.
“There's millions of products on the market, some of them are useless; I want to give true value,” he stressed to TFN.
Noticing the style variety on the diabetic sock market was limited, Iwuć started producing colourful socks for diabetics. “It's one of our best selling products now and we get great feedback on them,” the business owner added.
With a reported EUR 1.9 million turnover this year, the business has enjoyed great growth. But despite that, quality and purpose remains the couple’s mantra.
Conceptualised, designed, made and packed in Poland only, the socks are then shipped to markets across the Atlantic and throughout Europe. It makes business more expensive as they scale up, but Iwuć insists it’s worth it.
“The very important thing is that we produce only in Poland, I'm very proud of it, it allows us to produce high-quality products, and we know kids aren't working on our socks in a factory somewhere, so I don't need to stress and ask the question 'are we being ethical’?” he says.
Next, to add to their steady stream of success, the couple are working on gaining traction in the Canadian, Australian and Japanese markets.