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1489 - Opening picture cupsole mould

Step into our sole factory

One of our sole factories is located in "the shoe valley", just a 45 minute drive from Porto (Portugal). Three of our VICO sole units are made in this factory which has been family-run since 1992 and is currently managed by Armenio Cruz and his son Marcelo.

Assisted by cutting-edge technology, the Cruz family employ seven administrative staff and thirty full-time workers who produce some of the world's finest soles.

Founder Ermenio Cruz and his son Marcelo

Part of the team

A familiar sense of pride and belonging can be felt at the factory which specialises in producing rubber soles. Some employees have worked here for many years including a number who joined when the business was founded.

Merging heritage with modern technology, the factory also has its very own R&D department which focuses on using recycled materials and reducing the factory's environmental footprint.

Have a look at the labour intensive process required to make our rubber VICO soles.

This machine is used to roll the rubber and enable to mix and add colour to the rubber

Coloured rubber sheets

The rubber sheets are then cut in straps

After having rolled, coloured and cut the rubber in smaller straps, it is ready to be put in our VICO sole moulds. We produce three different soles here the cupsole, dressed sole and dressed heel sole. Each sole type has different characteristics and qualities. Made from high quality rubber, the same production process is used to produce all three soles.

Cupsole mould

Dressed heel sole mould

Dressed mould

Heel details

Extra deep mould, in order to have different height of this dressed sole

Inserting natural rubber straps in the cupsole mould

The mould is closed and heating starts

Removing the hot sole from the mould

Another pair made by Joao

Soles with excess material

Removing excess material from the sole

Andreia, removing excess material. One of the most detailed operations of the process

The soles are finished and ready to be shipped to our footwear factory

Leftover excess materials ready to be be recycled

Colour archive

Photography: Michel Wongsomenawi (

If you wish see how the fitting is of each sole, please see our Fit Guide:



EU 40 41 42 43 44 45 46
US 7.5 8.5 9 10 11 11.5 12
UK 6.5 7.5 8 9 10 10.5 11
JAP 25.5 26.5 27 28 28.5 29.5 30


EU 36 37 38 39 40 41
US 6 6.5 7.5 8.5 9 9.5
UK 3.5 4 5 6 6.5 7
JAP 22 22.5 23.5 24.5 25 25.5