The last American company to truly compete with Nike in the billion-dollar basketball sneaker market was And1, a rags-to-riches enterprise founded by three friends in Philadelphia who used grassroots marketing and an audacious approach to connect with young consumers. That was nearly 20 years ago. Can And1 possibly catch lightning in a bottle again? Zach Schonbrun inspects the rise, fall, and current relaunch of one of the most fascinating American brands of the 1990s, led by Cape Capener, an eccentric executive enchanted by the pursuit of simply developing "one great shoe". With it, Schonbrun peels back the curtain on "sneakerhead" culture, this country's haywire enthrallment with basketball shoes, and how a company like And1 can hope to compete again in a $4.5 billion industry.
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