In The Press

Are you a blogger or journalist looking for a new brand or an exclusive story?

 

We're it.

 

Our mission is to inspire and connect trailblazing women across the globe through what they love most: SHOES.  

 

Because every trailblazing woman needs one fabulous pair of flats.

 

Here are just a few of our outrageous headlines so far...

 

- No, we are not a Ferragamo concept store (as believed by local Florentines), but yes, we do rent our flagship store directly from the Ferragamo family and are located next to the Ferragamo headquarters and museum.

 

- The shop was open for the first 88 days without a door — a small detail. We finally installed a proper door on Nov. 27, 2013, just in time for winter.

 

- The VIAJIYU founder moved to Florence in September 2013 with no place to live, no staff and not a single Italian lesson to date. A sense of humor carries you far when you sleep on the shop floor for months with no hot water.

 

- Our first office in the world was in Shanghai, China.  We have companies set up in China, Italy, USA and Australia. We set up the Italian company in a record 12 days. Soon we will be able to sponsor work visas in four continents.

  

- The factory, which manufactures VIAJIYU and some of the world's most sought after luxury brands, turned down the founder twice over seven months before agreeing to be VIAJIYU's shoemaking partner in February 2013. 

 

- On Sept. 17, 2014, VIAJIYU was robbed by clients for the first time. "The Tales of a Skinny Startup" continued... The Frank Sinatra music in the boutique was silenced when the iPads were stolen by the thieves. It's now known as the day the music stopped temporarily. 

 

- On Jan. 1, 2015, VIAJIYU was in the black with no debt, no investors and completely self-funded. Not bad for less than 24 months of existence.

 

Lessons the VIAJIYU founder has learned so far: 
1. It helps to speak the language when you launch a company in a foreign country, especially to withdraw money from an ATM or to sign a lease with a legendary company, AKA Ferragamo.

 

2. Homelessness and entrepreneurship don't go hand in hand, at least before the company goes bankrupt. Sign a personal lease at the same time you sign a commercial lease in a new city.

 

3. Entrepreneurs today are young and hungry. It's tough to start a company close to 40. Possible, but physically tough. "I'm not 22 anymore," the VIAJIYU founder said. "It feels a bit like pregnancy at 40."

 

4. Hire baby boomers. The average age of a VIAJIYU staff member is over 40. You can teach someone to use a laptop or iPad, but you can't teach experience and attention to detail. We love team members who can do math without a calculator and spell without spellcheck.

 

5. Start small and scrappy and never forget family. Our small family business is less than 10 part-time people and only one full-time staff member.  Never let size, age or money stand in the way of your dreams.

 

Want to find out more? Email us at florence@viajiyu.com.

 

View our Brand Story in English. We can also send the brand story to you translated in eight languages, including Chinese, Japanese and Korean

 

(AP Style tip: VIAJIYU is always written in ALL CAPS.)

 

Here's what the press is saying about VIAJIYU...


"Meet the Woman Behind the Only Flats I Ever Wear"
Divine Living Magazine, Nov. 12, 2015 

 

 

"Meet the New Tamara Mellon"
Beauty Bible, Sept. 17, 2013

 

"VIAJIYU: More Than Shoes"
Blending Magazine, Autumn/Winter 2014 (page 59)

 

"Tales of a Lean Start-up"
How we survived our first six months of setbacks
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