Unraveling the Story of FUBU

In this video, I share with you the story of FUBU, the iconic clothing line that revolutionized the streetwear industry in the '90s. FUBU wasn't just a brand, it was a movement that resonated with people who wanted to wear clothes made by us, for us. We had partnerships with Samsung and the NBA, and FUBU became a household name. But what happened to FUBU after its sudden disappearance from the U.S. market? In this post, I'll explain why we changed our focus and how we're making a comeback in the U.S. market. Plus, I'll share some valuable lessons that small businesses can learn from our story.

So sit back, relax, and let's dive into the world of FUBU.

As an entrepreneur, it’s important to learn from past success and mistakes. FUBU was one of the biggest successes in streetwear fashion for over a decade but then suddenly disappeared from the spotlight in the U.S. market. 

Background and History of FUBU

In 1992, my 3 friends and I from Hollis, Queens had an unyielding vision. We wanted to create a sportswear line that truly resonated with the people who wore it. Against all odds, we succeeded in launching a brand that would go on to revolutionize the streetwear industry as we know it today. 

LL cool J wore a fubu hat in a gap commercial and this helped create immense brand awareness for our company. We eventually signed a contract with Samsung in 1995, helping Samsung launch its fashion financing and infrastructure platform. In 5 years, sales with the Samsung partnership reached $200 million dollars. 

Shortly after this deal with Samsung, Fubu got a licensing deal with the NBA. We created a clothing line called FUBU NBA. Hip-hop culture and basketball have always been closely aligned and a lot of big time stars were already wearing hip-hop and street wear fashion on the sidelines. 

So then why did FUBU “disappear”? 

It may have seemed like FUBU disappeared in the early 2000s, but we changed our focus from the U.S. market to international markets, such as Europe and Asia. FUBU had too much inventory in the U.S market and this negatively impacted our bottom line. Too much inventory caused FUBU to get put in clearance bins and discount retailers. 

FUBU announced a comeback to the U.S. markets in 2020. We plan to reach the same customer base who has now gotten older and still enjoys hip-hop culture and fashion. We are also targeting Gen - Z because this generation has also grown up around hip-hop culture and streetwear. We are excited to continue growing our brand and spreading hip-hop culture through fashion. 

Check out the youtube video here to learn
more about what happened to FUBU 👇🏾


Show Notes

Intro - 0:00 - 0:39
Founders of Fubu - 0:40 - 2:45

  • How it all started
  • The different impact that the 4 individual founders had on FUBU.

Daymond John Influence - 2:46 - 6:08

  • Where the idea for FUBU really came from
  • How FUBU gained worldwide recognition

Why did FUBU disappear? 6:09 - 9:06

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