Rome Snowboard Boots 2024/25 Preview

Retail Buyers Guide:  Snowboard Boots 2024/25 Retail Buyers Guide
Brand:  Rome
Interviewee: Matt Stillman, Benevolent Overlord

How would you describe the current state of the snowboard market? What big developments, changes, challenges, and/or opportunities are you seeing and how is your brand navigating them?
The overall state of the global snowboard market remains positive with lots to look forward to. It seems like despite the lacklustre winter in Europe last season, the stoke is high and the appetite for new products is strong. Generally speaking, our current strategy is maintaining our existing collection while expanding our ‘Pro Collection’ offering and reshaping key board models.

Following overall price increase, any positive developments with regards to manufacturing, sourcing, or logistics and the changes you’ve made? Are there any examples you can share of how your business pivoted effectively? What developments are you seeing with regards to product pricing?
The industry at large is indeed seeing pricing increase as material pricing increases and as inflation lingers. We are not immune to that but still doing our best to hold the line as much as possible on pricing.

Is e-commerce sales still strong since most brands have been put a lot of effort in physical retail?
We continue to see both sales channels as equally viable and complimentary to each other.

Past last winter and the lack of snow in Europe, what’s your overall sales and production/inventory strategy for 24/25?
Our overall production/inventory strategy has not changed for 24/25.




Will you be using any previously unseen materials (in outer shell, reinforcement, cushioning, support or grip) or construction methods? Any liner story or program you plan to highlight for 24/25?
For 24/25 our boot collection has some subtle but impressive material and tech improvements. Perhaps the most innovative is our new DuraFuse shell material. This innovative welded TPU material is used on boots’ outer shells for advanced waterproofing, abrasion resistance and increases the boot’s overall structure. We also went back to the drawing board and completely redesigned our HeelLock Harness system. The system is built into the boot’s shell for a more locked-in feel and easier removal of the liner itself for drying. We also will be offering the HeelLock Pro Harness, which is the same construction but the harness itself is made out of the robust DuraFuse material for additional stability and locked-in feel. New for this season, we are also featuring the new HotBox Foil in our higher-end boot models. This innovative, heat-retaining foil is built between the boot’s shell and midsole to keep riders’ feet warm without adding any weight or bulk.

What lacing systems are your main focus in 24/25 and why? Where does BOA fit in your overall strategy and focus?
Our boot collection has been structured around the idea of having multiple lacing systems offered within each boot model. This allows a retailer to determine what price, flex or lacing style is right for their customers. BOA is a key component of having these different lacing styles and flexes for each boot family. We continue to see success with our ‘Hybrid BOA’ systems as riders are drawn to having the ‘best of both worlds’ so to speak.

Please tell us about the dominant visual themes or patterns you plan to use in next year’s boot line (materials as well as colours)? Any interesting artist collabs or partnerships you have lined up? Which other footwear sectors or fashion trends do you follow that influence the line?
Our boot collection has always drawn inspiration from the hiking footwear sector as well as the skate footwear realm. Balancing the rugged, outdoorsy, function-first styles for the Libertine Family with subtle hits, like a color contrast speckle in the midsole, helps blends those two visual styles nicely.  For boots like the Bodega and Stomp families, we certainly lean a bit more into the skate realm with more high-contrast color palettes or white midsoles. For 24/25, the dominate color palette certainly revolves around new brand colors of slate and hunter orange. ‘Rugged and sophisticated’ is a succinct summary our visual direction.



Which part of your range are you investing in the most? Freestyle, freeride, all mountain, beginner…? Why?
We have seen strong growth with our boot collection since restructuring into the family layout, and for the 24/25 we are expanding those collections with key ‘Pro’ offerings to add new energy into the higher-end performance side of things. The Libertine Pro is a more responsive, supportive boot built for a rider who demands premium fit, feel and durability. This is the same logic for the new Women’s Bodega Pro BOA model, a higher end model for female riders who put their boots through the wringer no matter what kind of riding they focus on.

What developments are you seeing with regards to product pricing?
Our boot collection’s family-style arrangement lets shops and customers determine what lacing style, flex and price is right for them. Catering to a specific price point is what we are working to avoid with this structure.

What are your top product marketing stories for next season?Our key marketing stories in the boot collection center around the new Libertine Pro Hybrid BOA and Women’s Bodega Pro BOA. Expanding our key models with upgraded tech and performance.



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