Markhor

Luxury shoes direct from craftspeople

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#3 Product of the DayAugust 13, 2015

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Discussion

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Garry TanHunter@garrytan · Angel Investor. Previously Partner, YC
Waqas and Sidra grew up in the Pakistani village where a large number of luxury leather shoes and handicrafts are made. They know the craftspeople directly and are building tomorrow's luxury shoe line that cuts out all the middlemen and goes direct over the Internet. They're selling the highest quality shoes that would normally retail for $1000 or more at half the price, and giving 5X more directly to the people who make it. This is like Everlane, but even more direct since Markhor works directly with the makers, not through a factory intermediary. It's a big idea whose time has come. Why is it that we can manufacture computers halfway around the world and get it overnighted to your doorstep while luxury goods sell the same way they have for decades? Markhor is an interesting mix because they have the direct relationships with craftspeople who have been working on these crafts for decades, but they have the ability to translate those quality goods to a global stage. It's a new brand, and one enabled by the Internet.
Sidra QasimMaker@sidraqasim · Founder & co-CEO
Hi everyone, I’m the co-founder of Markhor (YC S15). Our goal is to connect you (the customer) directly with the craftsmen, who are making your products regardless of in which part of the world they're being made. Internet has enabled us to do so especially in the developing countries (this is where most of the luxury goods are made). Today we are taking the first step towards our goal and launching our transparency project. We believe you have the right to know where and under what conditions your products are made and who is making them. We believe no one wants to wear a pair of shoes/clothing made by a child or a pregnant women. Even though our craftsmen have been making European shoes for decades, it’s only now that we are able to connect them directly to the end customer. So what transparency are we bringing to our own company? For every order or a pair of shoes, you’ll know about the craftsmen/women who made them. You’ll receive step-by-step details about the work in progress through email. This is our first step (in beta right now) in this direction and we're experimenting this with some of our customers and the Kickstarter backers. And as part of being transparent, I just wanted to clarify this: We pay 2-5x the local wages to our craftsmen. You can see the email screenshot above. Happy to answer any questions about our products or the transparency mission in general. PS. Product Hunters get 20% off their first order by using the code 'PH20' at the checkout! 👊
Rohit Goyal@imrgoyal · CEO, PaxPlay
@sidraqasim Great work Sidra. Loved the whole concept. It would be interesting to see what challenges you face while scaling and how you resolve them. All the best :)
James Burton@jamesburton69 · @jamesburton69
@sidraqasim Any chance of getting the Kaptaan Chappal in a size 13? They look awesome
@sidraqasim Awesome love the concept. What are your beliefs in regards to customer experience?
Levi Kovacs@kovlex · Building @mobiscroll
@sidraqasim This looks amazing! I can smell the leather in these product photos...
Muhammad Nasrullah@nash · VP Engg Convo, Founder Frequel & Pring
I've been following Markhor from their very early days and it's a formidable team. They've been able to solve the hard problem of getting authentic handicrafts from Pakistan to consumers who care about the craft while reducing middlemen and benefiting the crafts men and women more than they possibly could have before. If you care about where your footwear comes from and how it's made, Markhor is a great choice.
Eliam Medina@eliam2 · CEO
Amazing shoes led by an amazing team!
James McBennett@mcbennett · Designer
Link to Kickstarter in case anyone else wants to see it... https://www.kickstarter.com/proj...