Flip Flop Shops opened the first of 25 locations to open throughout South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mauritius over the next several years. The shop development is part of a master franchise agreement with Barefoot, an experienced retail group in the region. Opened Thursday, July 3 in Woodlands Boulevard, Pretoria East, South Africa, the new store marks the first Flip Flop Shops location in Africa.

“South Africa is a growing retail market for international companies, and we have an incredibly strong and experienced retail partner in Barefoot,” states Brian Curin, the president and co-founder of Flip Flop Shops. “As the first shop on the continent – and with two dozen more in the works – this is one of the most exciting openings in company history in terms of geographic significance and growth.”

Once reserved only for poolside or beachwear, flip flops have grown to become the “global youth uniform,” as well as accepted footwear for anyone from surfers to high-level corporate executives. Flip Flop Shops’ mission is to provide the opportunity for anyone, in any climate, to Live…Work…Play With Their Toes Exposed and embrace the relaxing benefits of flip flops and casual footwear for a healthier, low stress lifestyle.

“We have real demand for a trend-setting casual-footwear retailer here in South Africa,” explains Elena Kyprianou, shop owner (size 9). “We are excited to be bringing hundreds of styles of flip flops and casual footwear, as well as two exclusive brands – Cobian and Freewaters – to the market, as well as to be offering a new level of global footwear expertise to our clientele.”

There are nearly 200 new shops in the development pipeline for Flip Flop Shops around the globe, and the growing company continues to seek partners for further shop development in several new international markets, including Latin America, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand, and parts of Asia including Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea and Vietnam. The franchise-based company is the leading authentic retailer devoted exclusively to the latest styles of flip flops and casual footwear from the world’s hottest brands, including REEF, Cobian, OluKai, Quiksilver, ROXY, SANUK and more.

“The commitment and passion Elena and team have shown in the development and planning of this Flip Flop Shops location is unparalleled,” continues Flip Flop Shops Co-Founder and CEO Darin Kraetsch. “We couldn’t be more excited to be entering the South African market with such an experienced and enthusiastic team.”
The company began franchising in 2008 and now operates more than 100 shops globally with 150-plus in the worldwide development pipeline.