New York sportswear label Le Tigre has unveiled its first footwear line as part of Designer Brands’ efforts to expand brand capabilities.
The retail group initially formed a licensing agreement with Le Tigre in July 2022, alongside its acquisitions of Keds and Topo Athletic, all moves aimed at growing its portfolio and leveraging its direct-to-consumer infrastructure.
Now, Designer Brands is using its operations to support Le Tigre’s new category entry, with the label’s new footwear to further its “sports-meet-fashion” aesthetic.
The line consists of six new shoe designs each referencing values of the brand’s home city, such as the Tompkins style, which serves as a nod to Tompkins Square.
Designer Brands holds one-third of interest in the Le Tigre brand, and will take on the responsibility of exclusively designing and producing its footwear to be sold primarily through DSW and The Shoe Company, as well as its own ecommerce channels and wholesale accounts.
In a release, the group’s president, Bill Jordan, said: “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.
“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.”