Chris Lindland got his big break after dreaming up the idea for horizontal corduroy pants.
“I had no fashion background at all,” he said. “I made them an Internet product, and they became an Internet sensation.”
Lindland marketed the pants with pseudo-scientific facts claiming sideways corduroy produces less friction than traditional corduroy, hence leading to cooler crotches.
He launched Cordarounds.com in 2005 with $8,000 of his own money. He sold the pants in three different colors and they quickly became a viral sensation.
So he decided to think more broadly. In 2010, with $200,000 from investors, Lindland founded the San Francisco start-up Betabrand, a web-based clothing company that mixes quirky humor and clever marketing to create online buzz.
“Why make pants when you can make Sons of Britches pants?” he asked. “We try to create products that have a novelty to them.”
Like the Executive Hoodie made out of suit cloth, which sells for $168. Inspired by Mark Zuckerberg, it was launched in 2012 to coincide with Facebook’s (FB, Fortune 500)IPO. It took the company six months to catch up with demand after nearly 1,000 orders rolled in, Lindland said.
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