Skullcandy公司于2003年成立于美国犹他州帕克市。目前，iPod采用白色耳机，而其他公司则仅有单调的黑色产品，Skullcandy则受到街头文化的启发，推出了彩色音频设备，让公司异军突起。公司推出的洛可可风格耳罩式耳机和插入式耳机专为极限运动爱好者量身定做，能在运动中保持固定，从而为公司赢得了创新的名声。公司成立以来，消费者对时尚耳机的需求便在不断增长，当然，这在很大程度上得益于智能手机的普及（智能手机同时也是音乐播放器）。索尼（Sony）、博士（Bose）和Beats by Dr. Dre等许多音响设备品牌都从这一趋势中受益匪浅。据美国市场研究公司NPD报告，去年，美国耳机市场的规模是20亿美元，比前一年增加了79%。
Skullcandy didn't invent the formula of selling audio gear as if it was fashion. But in a few short years, it has used it to grow a thriving business that dominates the headphone market among teens and twenty-somethings. The lifestyle brand -- which markets mainly to snowboarders and skateboarders -- went public this July. Now, Skullcandy must continue to grow without alienating the core customers that gave it legs to begin with.
The company, founded in 2003 in Park City, Utah, made its mark selling colorful, street art-inspired audio gear in an iPod white or everyone-else-black world. Skullcandy (SKUL) earned a reputation for innovation, releasing rococo over-the-ear headphones as well as earbuds designed to stay put and tailored-made for its action sport crowd. The appetite for trendy headsets has grown since the company started, largely due to the ubiquity of smartphones that double as music players. Varied brands like Sony (SNE), Bose and the Beats by Dr. Dre have gotten a big boost from the trend. The US market for headphones this past year was $2 billion, up 79% from last year, according to NPD.
Even in a booming market, Skullcandy has done remarkably well: a healthy IPO announced last summer; a 57.5% increase in sales from last year at this time; and the acquisition of Zurich, Switzerland company 57 North in August, which has marked Skullcandy's entry into Europe. These are good strides for the company, but they also bring potential problems.
Overexposure has been a concern for the company ever since it first became stylish. CEO Jeremy Andrus is aware that the more successful Skullcandy becomes, the more it risks losing touch with its base. "The discussion we have everyday is: How do we remain relevant to the core consumer?" he says. "It's important to our business model to treat them as we did in the earliest days of the business, when they were our only customers." (The company's previous CEO was ousted one month before its IPO.)
What's changed, besides an influx of profits? Hardcore snowboarders and skaters are not the only customers anymore. After initially being sold exclusively in specialty stores like Zumiez or Tilly's, now Skullcandy products are available at major retailers everywhere, including Best Buy (BBY) and Apple (AAPL) Stores. That risks over-exposure.