Brian Atwood enters into "strategic partnership" with Steve Madden

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Footwear mogul Steve Madden and luxury footwear designer Brian Atwood are teaming up to acquire the intellectual property and related assets for Atwood’s eponymous collection and contemporary sub-brand B Brian Atwood from The Jones Group.

The strategic partnership means that Atwood can buy back his designer business, which has been under The Jones Group portfolio of brands since 2012. Speculation has been growing that Atwood and some of Jones’ other underperforming brands, could be sold on after its sale to private equity firm Sycamore Partners at the end of 2013, after the group closed Atwood’s Manhattan flagship and discontinued Rachel Roy’s eponymous line.

The terms of the transaction have not been disclosed, although the press statement confirmed that the brand will transition from The Jones Group from spring 2015 deliveries.

The new deal will see Atwood remaining as an owner and will have full operational and creative control of the design, production and distribution of the Milan-based Brian Atwood designer collection. In addition, the partnership will leverage Steve Madden’s “global brand building expertise, strategic vision and relationships to collaborate with Atwood on the design, production, marketing and distribution of B Brian Atwood® footwear and handbags”.

Brian Atwood teaming up with Steve Madden

Brian Atwood, chief creative officer, said: "I've always had a clear vision for the Brian Atwood brand and the women who wear it. I look forward to the next phase of my business with support and expertise of Steve to drive strategic growth and category expansion to continue to create experiences that women love."

Steve Madden added: “Brian Atwood is one of the world’s great designers. I’m such a big fan of his. We feel lucky to have the opportunity to work with him.”

The Brian Atwood designer collection, which launched in 2001, is available at Bergdorf Goodman, Saks, Net-a-Porter and high-end boutiques, while the contemporary B Brian Atwood brand that launch in 2011 is sold in department stores and specialty retailers.

Image: Brian Atwood SS14

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