A news article popped into my inbox this morning regarding Allbirds CEO Joey Zwillinger’s response to Amazon’s cloning of their popular Wool Runner sneaker.
Zwillinger handles this situation like a champ, encouraging Amazon to at least use the same materials that they do so that their products will be environmentally friendly. Zwillinger even gives the names and ingredients that go into the foam base of their shoes.
While I’m sure that Amazon cloning your company’s signature product is frustrating, Allbirds and Zwillinger handle it like a champ. Allbirds gained popularity based on their limited environmental impacts, which is what I believe will keep the company going regardless of what Amazon tries to do.
The Amazon shoe sells for $45, and you can find it at Walmart.com. While this may be a more affordable option for those who can’t spend the $95 for a new pair of Allbirds, the products are ridiculously similar and that is not enough of an excuse to put a cheaper clone of a branded product into the marketplace.
This is not a new behavior for Amazon, as they use their private-label brands to knock of products all of the time without actually selling the products under the Amazon name. It’s a shame that Amazon feels the need to do this. It’s actually a bit embarrassing, too, because they are trying so hard.
My loyalty stands with Allbirds, always.