CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Sept 17. 2019 –– MIT’s delta v educational accelerator, at the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship, will launch a new startup called Season Three this fall. The only direct-to-consumer company focused on the fashion lifestyle space in the accelerator, Adam Klein, MBA ’19, and Jared Johnson, MBA ’20, will offer a product line featuring all-weather Merino wool lined boots engineered at MIT.
“Our product fits an open space within the shoe industry that existing shoes have failed to fulfill. The boots are designed for all humans –– they are unisex –– making style and comfort accessible to everyone. They encourage the exploration of your surroundings, without sacrificing professionalism,” says Klein.
Johnson says, “The resources, support, and mentorship provided at MIT Sloan were invaluable. They helped us go from nothing to something.”
Meeting in MIT Sloan’s MBA Program, the team combined Johnson’s passion for fashion as well as design experience with Klein’s entrepreneurial, finance and legal experience to create an outdoors brand that they describe as a “marriage of fashion, comfort, and functionality.”
The idea began with a personal need, explains Johnson. “We were walking in Boston on a snowy, cold winter day in big chunky boots. We talked about how boots could be designed better not only in terms of style, but also thermal stability. We wanted to create a comfortable boot that anyone could wear to the office and then move throughout the city during the day and to events after work. Out of that came Season Three.”
Klein adds, “Jared brings a tremendous knowledge of footwear to this venture. Before MIT, he pursued design with the goal of working in the fashion and footwear sector.”
At MIT, they began working on the idea through the MITdesignX program in MIT’s School of Architecture and Planning and received support from the MIT Sandbox Innovation Fund. They also received support and mentorship from the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship as well as feedback from faculty, alumni, and classmates. Through classes, they refined their business plan and marketing strategy.
The cofounders designed the boot at MIT with their “Threedom footbed,” which provides shock absorbing qualities for comfort as well as greater absorption of moisture. The boot is temperature controlled by a combination of merino wool and weather-proof leathers.
“No other product caters to the new lifestyle of the ‘WeWork Generation,’ where someone working 60 hours a week needs fashion to seamlessly flow between professional environments, drinks with friends, and side hustles in between. As a unisex brand, we recognize an eagerness within all humans,” says Johnson. “We believe our boots are a product that advocates for collective unity.”
The founders will participate in the delta v program Demo Day presentations at MIT, New York City, and San Francisco in September. They plan to officially launch their online store in November. The boots will be their initial product and retail at $345.
“We’ve received a lot of interest because the boots were designed at MIT and we occupy a unique position in the fashion lifestyle space. We are taking everything we learned in school to build this company, and we look forward to our launch this fall,” says Jared.
The MIT Sloan School of Management is where smart, independent leaders come together to solve problems, create new organizations, and improve the world. Learn more at mitsloan.mit.edu.