Historical feet: Czech sneaker brand returns from bankruptcy with flagship store

Once on the brink of liquidation, the iconic Botas sneaker brand sold an impressive 12,000 pairs of shoes in the past year.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 12.03.2024 16:37:00 (updated on 13.03.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

Once on the brink of liquidation, the iconic Botas sneaker brand sold an impressive 12,000 pairs of shoes in the past year, boasting a turnover of around CZK 30 million. Eyeing a target of CZK 60 million in 2024, the brand has introduced five new collections, its first clothing line, and will open a flagship store in Prague.

Exactly one year after the Czech shoemaking brothers behind the Vasky label acquired the company, Vít Staněk, co-owner of Vasky and Botas, explained the secret to the brand’s success and revealed its best-selling pair.

"The Botas Classic in tricolor is the most famous model in history. Respecting the original design, we made a few modifications to perfect it. These shoes are a fashion piece and a memory of the glorious past."

A significant achievement for Botas is its expanding appeal to a younger demographic, bridging generational gaps. Staněk's brother and partner, Václav Staněk, said: "This is the only way we can make Botas [by keeping] the shoes successful for the next generation."

Founded as Botana in 1949, Botas became a prominent Czech sports shoe brand by 1963. Through the 1990s, it gained immense popularity with turnovers in the hundreds of millions of crowns. Botas manufactured shoes for renowned brands like Puma, Salomon, and Jofa, further cementing its influence. The Botas 66 collection continued the brand's success into the 2010s, solidifying its position in the footwear market. Today the word "botasky" in Czech refers to any sports shoe.

Entering its second year, Botas has announced the opening of its first brick-and-mortar store on Krakovská Street near Wenceslas Square. Following its successful first week, during which it sold over 1,600 pairs of shoes, the brand plans to launch its e-shop. The Slovakian market, where Botas is gaining popularity, accounts for 40 percent of current sales.

Reflecting on the broader mission of preserving shoemaking traditions in the Czech Republic, Staněk said:

“We want to thank our customers who mobilized their forces exactly one year ago and decided to support us by buying shoes when Czech shoemaking needed it.” He continued, "It’s been eight years since we’ve been working to give shoemaking a place on the market.”


According to the previous management of Botas, the company went into liquidation in 2023 due to the increasing price of energy, costlier materials for production, and fewer sales due to the Russia-Ukraine war.

Now as Botas marks its one-year milestone, the brothers say the brand champions a legacy and helps shoemaking endure for future generations.

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