An emerging entrepreneur sought a strategic partner to help grow her small Panamanian footwear and accessory company into an international brand. Today, her products are worn by consumers in over 70 countries.


Undercover uncovers the secret of success

When Mary Quintero shipped her first order of Undercover, she used the Panamanian national mail service. The customer received it nine days later. Up to that point, Mary had been trekking along on sheer grit and determination - assembling a team of passionate, socially conscious women to build her brand. She was creating a lot of buzz, but she realized that international success depended on partnering with a reliable international shipper.

And DHL was her first choice. “I always wanted to work with DHL Express,“ says Mary. “As a young girl, a family friend told me that DHL was more than just her employer – it was her family. I thought, if my small company becomes a DHL customer, maybe we’ll be treated like family, too.“

These boots are made for walking – across borders

With her team in place and an extensive digital marketing campaign ready to go, Mary made DHL Express her exclusive shipping partner. Since that decisive moment in 2016, Undercover’s orders have increased 400%, her average shopping cart value has increased by 20%, and the company now ships to over 70 countries - up from 12.

Mary credits DHL for helping her grow to where she is today. Customers appreciate the flexible On-Demand Delivery options DHL offers, which enable them to specify where and when their packages are delivered. They also value the Delivered Duty Paid (DDP) service, which collects Customs charges when the order is placed rather than at the time of delivery. This prevents delays and customer frustration.

“Customers can purchase items with a click, without worrying about additional import paperwork and duty payments,” Mary says.

Undercover puts its best foot forward


increase in domestic and international sales since partnering with DHL


increase in online sales during the pandemic


Countries served, up from 12


Increase in average shopping cart value

The perfect pair – a partnership that delivers

The partnership’s early success didn’t go unnoticed. DHL Express Panama recognized Undercover with the DHL Pymexporta award for growing its export operations and bringing Panamanian art and culture to the world. The award included an invitation to DHL-sponsored international business workshops.

Mary credits that business support as critical to her rapid international growth. “DHL helped me grow as an entrepreneur. I learned about international commerce, e-commerce best practices, import-export procedures and how to reduce shipping costs.”

The tight partnership has proven itself during the pandemic, as Undercover pivoted its brand message and saw online sales triple. “With our brick-and-mortar store shuttered, our DHL courier continued to pick up our orders – from my house. DHL kept all our shipments moving seamlessly as if there were no pandemic.”

By connecting Mary and her team to more than 220 countries and territories, we’re confident that Undercover is well on its way to becoming a leading global brand.

Learn more about how Undercover made a splash in the global market

Find out how DHL is helping global e-commerce keep up with the clicks