Designer Brands Launches First-Ever Le TIGRE Brand Footwear Line

Company flexes power as brand-building engine, player in athleisure footwear category

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Aug. 14, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Designer Brands Inc., one of the world’s largest designers, producers, and retailers of footwear and accessories, announced today the launch of the first-ever footwear line by Le TIGRE, an iconic New York City sportswear brand and disrupter of classic casual American style since 1977. Designer Brands is flexing its power as a brand-building engine with a bold foray into the athleisure footwear category.

Designer Brands Logo (PRNewsfoto/Designer Brands Inc.)

The addition of Le TIGRE, along with the recent acquisitions of Keds and Topo Athletic, enables Designer Brands to grow its brand portfolio in the increasingly important athletic and athleisure space, further expanding its branding capabilities, while leveraging an industry leading direct-to-consumer infrastructure of DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse and The Shoe Company stores in North America, a billion-dollar digital platform and a nearly 30-million-member VIP loyalty program.

“The process of envisioning, defining, and bringing the essence of Le TIGRE to life in footwear has been an exciting journey. As brand builders, we are focused on creating style and value for our customers powered by our passion for inspiring self-expression,” said Bill Jordan, Designer Brands President. “Launching the new Le TIGRE footwear collection strengthens our Owned Brands portfolio and aligns with our goal of doubling sales of Owned Brands by 2026. This is an opportunity to truly disrupt the footwear marketplace, delivering great design and creating something truly special.”

“This is a monumental occasion for Le TIGRE as we embark on a footwear journey with industry leader, Designer Brands,” said Ike Franco, Chief Executive Officer of Le TIGRE. “Le TIGRE has long represented an image of style disruption and uniqueness. This new footwear line embodies that sentiment.”

Le TIGRE | Born in the city. Raised in the wild. Ready for anything.
Dripping with street cred, Le TIGRE footwear is intentional about its “sport-meets-fashion” statement, delivering style, versatility, and comfort. Drawing from the energy of Le TIGRE’s New York City roots, each of the six new shoe designs carries the name and spirit of a key part of the Big Apple. The Tompkins style, for example, serves as a nod to Tompkins Square, a vibrant park and popular gathering spot in the East Village since 1897, while the Loughlin style draws from the Bishop Loughlin High School band’s tradition of performing the Rocky theme song for three consecutive hours to inspire NYC Marathon runners each fall.

Designer Brands holds a one third interest of the Le TIGRE brand and will exclusively design and produce Le TIGRE footwear to be sold primarily through DSW and The Shoe Company direct-to-consumer stores and .com channels, in addition to select wholesale accounts and through letigreglobal.com.

About Designer Brands
Designer Brands is one of the world’s largest designers, producers and retailers of the most recognizable footwear brands and accessories, transforming and defining the footwear industry through a mission of inspiring self-expression. With a diversified, world-class portfolio of coveted brands, including Keds, Lucky Brand, Crown Vintage, Vince Camuto, Topo Athletic, Jessica Simpson, Le TIGRE and others, Designer Brands designs and produces on-trend footwear and accessories for all of life’s occasions delivered to the consumer through a robust direct-to-consumer omni-channel infrastructure and powerful national wholesale distribution. Powered by a billion-dollar digital commerce business across multiple domains and nearly 640 DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse and The Shoe Company stores in North America, Designer Brands delivers current, in-line footwear and accessories from the largest national brands in the industry and holds leading market share positions in key product categories across Women’s, Men’s and Kids’. Designer Brands also distributes its brands internationally through select wholesale and distributor relationships while also leveraging design and sourcing expertise to build private label product for national retailers. Designer Brands is committed to being a difference maker in the world, taking steps forward to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the footwear industry and supporting a global community and the health of the planet by donating more than seven million pairs of shoes to the global non-profit Soles4Souls. To learn more, visit www.designerbrands.com.

About Le TIGRE 360 Global 
Originally created in 1977 in New York City, Le TIGRE sought to disrupt classic, casual American style. With bold and vibrant color waves applied to classic designs, Le TIGRE became the leader in “Preppy Style” with a twist. Inspired by the rich cultural diversity of the city that never sleeps, Le TIGRE embodies the spirit of the contemporary urban dweller. With over four decades of expertise in the fashion industry, Le TIGRE has garnered a loyal following of fashion enthusiasts, artists, musicians, and trendsetters alike. Le TIGRE appeals to older millennials who feel nostalgic for the polo they wore growing up, as well as a new generation discovering the heritage brand for the first time. The apparel is available direct-to-consumer through the brand website as well as in select retail stores and boutiques.

Since 2015, Le TIGRE has been owned by Infinity Brands and Hilco Global. In 2022, Designer Brands announced an investment in and licensing agreement with Le TIGRE. Designer Brands, Infinity Brands and Hilco Global hold equal ownership interests in Le TIGRE.

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SOURCE Designer Brands Inc.

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