Student becomes first U.S. distributor for shoe company

South Korean shoe company SBENU named Dat Lin its first authorized U.S. shoe dealer.

The shoes Dat Lin currently has in stock are from SBENU's S-Line which are $60 a pair. | Henry Savage TTN

When Dat Lin wanted to buy shoes from a shoe company based in South Korea, he realized how difficult it could be without an American distributor.

So instead of just ordering a pair online, Lin decided to see if he could become a distributor for the United States. Now, he is the first U.S. proprietor for SBENU.

“After talking to the representatives, I found out they currently had no distributors in the U.S.,” said Lin, a sophomore computer science major. “I just decided, why not take the opportunity to be the first? I thought it was a good opportunity to start it up, and have the access to these shoes in the U.S.”

With Lin authorized as the distributor, SBENU made its U.S. launch at the Student Center Nov. 2 where he showcased the first line of shoes, featuring eight different styles.

SBENU has become popular in South Korea’s mainstream culture with K-pop girl groups like AOA, or Ace of Angels, endorsing its footwear and soccer team Manchester United F.C. naming the company its official casual shoe.

The company is also one of the main sponsors for eSports, competitive gaming, in South Korea.

As a fan of eSports and South Korean music stars, Lin was drawn to SBENU because of what the company supported.

“I saw that they are an active supporter of eSports,” Lin said. “They also sponsor some famous Korean singers and bands like IU and Kisum.”

But Lin also supports the company for its in-house production, which can benefit the South Korean economy.

“They’re nice people that keep work domestic for people in Korea,” Lin said.

The 48 pairs of shoes Lin currently has in stock from SBENU are from its S-Line and all $60, which he said is a better deal compared to having to pay $90 to $120 online.

The vending event did not pull as many customers as planned; however, a steep interest in male’s shoes was seen, Lin said.

Being a full-time student, Lin said “balancing school, sales and a part time job is pretty difficult right now.”

In the near future, Lin said he hopes to open a retail location to start selling SBENU shoes, which would also make his store the first in the U.S. to sell SBENU.

H also encourages anyone to contact him if they are interested in the shoes or have a different style in mind he doesn’t have.

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