Toms to open Austin store modeled after Southern California flagship location

Feb 26, 2014
Austin Business Journal

Toms, the popular shoe company and now purveyor of eyewear, is opening its second brick-and-mortar store in the country on Austin's hip South Congress Avenue

The 1,200-square-foot South Austin space, formerly a house, will include a cafe and public space for music and community gatherings.  The other store is in Venice, Calif.

“Austin is one of the best markets in the country, but we’re creating more than a store. This is a place for the community to come together and discuss ideas,” said Blake Mycoskie, the founder of Toms

The house, at 1401 S. Congress Ave., is being renovated for a grand opening March 11 following Mycoskie's presentation on the main stage at South By Southwest

A serial entrepreneur since his college days at Southern Methodist University, Mycoskie created Toms after a visit to Argentina where he saw the immense need for children to have shoes

Toms was created with the commitment that for every shoe sold, one would be given away, or One for One, which is the corporate tagline. In 2011, the company launched Toms eyewear with the same expectations. Now, it appears that another product will be launched

Jorge Rangel, a broker with Ironwood Real Estate in Austin and Mycoskie’s friend, discovered the Austin location that resonated with Toms’ founder and chief shoe giver. The search began a couple of years ago — Toms opened its flagship store in Southern California in 2012 — though the company had been selling its products online and through other retailers for years.

Mycoskie is looking for other Texas locations — he grew up in Dallas — and the company will open a store soon in New York City

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