By Aimee Chanthadavong

More than 65 years on and three generations later, Kumfs is rebranding and renaming itself as Ziera Shoes to increase its sales.

Andrew Robertson, grandson of the founder and managing director, admitted to Retailbiz that the company has been toying with the idea for quite some time.

“We felt that Kumfs is not a very pretty name and not very inspirational and it wasn’t coinciding with the product we were developing.”

Kumfs was originally approached by Better By Design, a New Zealand government run program where selected companies are assisted with increasing their international competitiveness by integrating design principles right across their business.

“It was very much an internal desire that we knew we had to change for the long term and it was just convenient that the government program existed,” Robertson said.

He said as part of the rebrand the company has evolved to offering more stylish, yet comfortable shoe designs.

“In terms of evolution over the last five to six years we have become a lot more open to the world. We’ve got a lot more international designers coming into the business and all those things have contributed to putting forward a strong brand,” Robertson said.

“The rebrand is about looking forward to the future and we have a brand that can take us forward especially in the Australian and New Zealand market where it’s had a bit of a stigma.”

Despite the name change, Ziera Shoes will still be targeted to the same audience, Robertson said.

“The target market hasn’t really changed as age is just a number and it’s more about attitude; it’s for women who has done the fashion victim thing and wants to be comfortable but really needs that mix of fashion, style and comfort.”