Collective Brands, Inc. had a busy week dealing with brands that build its empire as a pair of its subsidiaries inked new deals. First came word that Collective Licensing had licensed the Airwalk and Vision Streetwear brands out to a subsidiary of Canadian retailer The Forzani Group, which was followed shortly thereafter by the news that Stride Rite had reacquired the PRO-Keds rights it had previously licensed out to hip hop mogul Damon Dash.
In the Airwalk deal, Collective Licensing signed a multi-year agreement with Intersports North America, a Forzani subsidiary, to market and sell Airwalk branded footwear in the United States and Vision Street Wear branded footwear throughout the Americas. The two companies also announced they are jointly working towards opening a design studio and showroom located in southern California to support the expansion of the two footwear brands with a focus on targeting and servicing an expanded specialty independent and mall-based retail network. The Vision Street Wear license will begin immediately, while the Airwalk license begins January 1, 2009.
In the Stride Rite deal with Damon Dash, the company reacquired its rights to the PRO-Keds brand, intending to bring the brand back in-house as part of a new strategic direction for the business. The new brand strategy includes a brand re-imaging leveraging the PRO-Keds heritage, product enhancements to classic styles with fresh materials, colors and other trend details, as well as commemorative limited-edition collections to celebrate the brand’s 60th anniversary.