Christopher D. Burns

Me wearing the Allen Casual in Navy suede and canvas
Me wearing the Allen Casual in Navy suede and canvas

Updated August 28th, 2016 ARCH, the brand, has been around now for 7 years. I’m contemplating making more shoes. In the meantime I’ve taken the website deep into the lifestyle and sneaker business side. What I want to do is make the love of sneakers more informed. I don’t want to put release dates and all of that, I want to analyze the stocks of the companies, the marketing strategies and introduce apparel, music, and art to the sneaker world. What I want is a site where if you want to buy kicks, you can do that. If you want to learn about the sneaker industry, you can do that. If you want to discover something dope, you can do that. I want sneaker lovers to find an appreciation in everything that life has to offer. I hope you enjoy the site.

Updated November 15th, 2014 I’ve made it to the 5 year point. I am finally comfortable with the idea that I’ve accomplished something incredible. I don’t have a problem saying this. I have never had a lot of money and I have yet to find a person willing to join me in building the brand. I have had people want to take a part in ownership, but they haven’t wanted to put any money in and spend anything. Those people thought their name could build the company… and maybe it could have. However, if a person is really interested in what you’re doing, then they should be willing to take on the risk. This month I will move into apparel. It’s exciting and different. This move has also forced me to re-evaluate just what ARCH is. ARCH is a direct to consumer footwear and apparel company. My goal is to find clothing that actually serves a purpose and will enhance the lifestyle of athletes and casual people. I now realize that nothing really distinguishes my footwear from any other brand. With Meb winning marathons in Skechers, people are beginning to become more open about trying different shoes. This does not make me comfortable. This does allow me to really focus on creating something that people will want to try. With that said I will only create footwear and apparel with a clearly defined purpose that will be presented in the description. I thank everyone who helped me get to this point and I look forward to building a bigger and better company in this next 5 years.

Today is November 25th, 2012. Today is the day that I’ve decided to develop a mission statement for ARCH. Up until this point I have basically thought of the company as a breakdown of the acronym Athletes Require Competition & Heart. I have also developed a lot of other acronyms, but these are not mission statements. This is the new mission statement for ARCH that can explain and be a response to the question, “What is ARCH and why are you trying to do what you do?”: ARCH is footwear that is simple, subtle, cool, comfortable, functional and casual. ARCH’s primary goal is to present to people an alternative to bigger, more popular brands that use minimalist ideas in footwear, but still charge increased price points for shoes with limited technology. What do I mean by this? ARCH’s casual and athletic shoes have reduced all of the multiple components that are found in both casual and running shoes, but unlike all of the other companies, our price points convey this minimalist approach, while other lightweight shoes from other brands have increased in price. Long story short – Looking cool, living healthy, running and enjoying life is our mission and doing this at a great price point is the goal.

I appreciate you stopping by the site. I am not the type of person who is pretending to be bigger than I actually am. ARCH is primarily a one man show. I am the designer, shipping and receiving department, website developer, point of contact for customer service, and obviously the owner. The only thing I don’t do is manufacture the shoe. Right now the manufacturing is done off shore. I’d love to do this in the US and I’m working on it, but the cost is steep.

ARCH is a very small sneaker company with deep roots in the athletic and sneaker community. I’ve put in a lot of work behind the scenes and with the help of one dedicated artist and designer (Ian Matic Gale) on a few of the last projects which have not launched, I’ve accomplished what some have tried by myself.  I’m not ashamed to say that what I have done is very difficult. I’m not ashamed to say that it should be respected especially considering the ups and downs I’ve encountered. I created everything on my own and while it is very hard to sell one shoe in a climate that is dominated by Nike. I will not lie down and stop trying this without giving a truly dedicated effort.

Your visit to the site is truly appreciated. It’s not a risk to be different and wear something new. I remember rocking Le Coq Sportif, Diadora, Ellesse, Brooks, Avia and Adidas. I grew up in a time where being an individual was prided above all and if your sneakers were rare you were fly. It wasn’t embarrassing to try new things. Maybe you will think like an individual and give a pair of my shoes a try.

Leave a comment or if you want to rap hit me at cburns at arch-usa.com (replace the at with @)

Chris B.

History

I began ARCH in 2009. After helping to launch another brand, I decided that my efforts and talents should go to South Beach… Actually, after learning more about business I decided to implement my ideas into something that I could believe in and that could become a venture that would grow.

ARCH is basically an extension of what I started with Center Court Basketball.com. I initially launched CCB as a way to help underrecruited players attain college basketball scholarships. CCB helped to send over 100 players to college from 2005 to 2010. The active time for the site was from 05 to 08. While I was operating the camps and website, I was also branding CCB with a small footwear and apparel company. At the time I had 9 colleges wearing the companies uniforms and a professional basketball league as well as streetball leagues also wearing the shoes and uniforms. In 2008, the apparel company that I helped to create was purchased and sold which caused me to be in a serious financial bind. In all honesty once the company was sold I needed to recreate CCB. In going through the process of redesigning the website, I learned a lot about the sneaker biz by researching companies like Nike and Adidas. I realized that I needed to take a break and I began working on a business plan. After a year and a half of research (yep it took that long), I launched ARCH by CCB. The story is a lot more detailed, and if you want to know every detail leave a question and I will respond below, but know this my primary cause in starting ARCH is to create shoes that I like that are cost effective and can perform. As much as I love the other brands, I just felt that I had something to bring to the table. If it works cool, if it doesn’t I can look my children in the eyes and tell them I followed my dreams.

I released a limited edition shoe, The Status in 2009 and in late 2009 I released a casual shoe: The Tori (peep the video commercial shot by some of my students I taught). In 2010 I released the CG 097 running shoe which is the most successful shoe I’ve made so far. The CG was a sneaker based on my two favorite running shoes the Nike Air Max 90 and the classic New Balance silhouette. I created an outsole that used a technology called P-Grip and people liked the shoe. One of the colorways was designed by Nike Future Sole winner Christopher Dixon. I released the second shoe in the CG series in 2012 just in time for the Olympics.  The shoe was redesigned and utilized colorways and materials suggested by Ian Matic Gale an incredible designer who really streamlined the CG097 II. This was done after I also made The Allen another casual shoe that was released in 2011. I updated The Allen in 2012 with the Suede & Denim pack. In 2013 I realized I wasn’t analyzing the business aspects as well as I should and encountered financial strains with the online store and I began to crunch numbers. I knew I was losing a lot of money running ARCH but because the online store began struggling, this became more prominent. I went into the end of 2013 contemplating a shutdown. That’s when I decided to give it one more try heading into the fifth year. I ran a Kickstarter and this has created a more positive situation for the company in 2014.

Education:
AA in Psychology Mesa College 97
BA in English San Diego State University 00
MFA in Creative Writing San Diego State University 04

Basketball Background:
Played at San Diego City College 95-97
Assistant Coach Crawford High School: League Champs 98-99
Head Coach Crawford High School: 99 – 04
11 players selected all league.
A number of players who played at the collegiate level and professional level
Recruited for Imperial Valley College Basketball from 2001-04.
Certified through National Federation State High School Coaches Education Program on December 3, 2001

Operated the CCB Sports Network from 2004 to 2010.

Contact me by e-mail:

cburns@arch-usa.com

Phone:

901-605-5456, or simply leave a message below and I will respond as soon as possible.

Office/Storefront:

902 Cooper street
Memphis, TN 38104

ARCH in the NEWS

Memphis Business Quarterly

http://www.mbqmemphis.com/MBQ-Inside-Memphis-Business/April-2014/ARCH/

The Memphis Flyer:

http://www.memphisflyer.com/memphis/shoes-with-soul/Content?oid=3625250

The X Stylez:

http://thexstylez.blogspot.com/2012/08/feature-week-day-2-archive-102-arch.html

PSFK:

http://www.psfk.com/2012/08/chris-burns-arch.html#!yHt4j

Rohn Padmore’s Fashionista

http://www.momultimedia.com/fmag/feature-the-secret-to-success-chris-burns/