Steve Madden Acquires Brian Atwood


On the heels—pun intended—of the news that Brian Atwood very suddenly and unceremoniously closed his Madison Avenue boutique, things are looking up for the shoe designer.

Initially, we thought that the shop’s closing was another chapter in Jones Group’s brand reorganization. After discontinuing labelmate Rachel Roy’s namesake line, we questioned if Atwood would suffer the same fate.

Turns out, Steve Madden is here to save the day! Steve Madden Ltd (along with Atwood thanks to a buyback option in his contract) just acquired the Brian Atwood intellectual property and related assets in a series of transactions involving Bluestar Alliance and The Jones Group, Women’s Wear Dailyis reporting.

Much like when Steve Madden Ltd bought Betsey Johnson, Atwood will maintain creative control while Madden’s design team helps to execute that vision. We will first get a glimpse at the partnership in Spring 2015.

“I love adventure,” Madden told WWD. “We’re not in the Atwood era. Brian Atwood is a premier designer and he’s also American, which I love, although everybody gets upset when I say that. When you go to the floors at Barneys, there aren’t many American designers. Brian is a Midwest boy and he’s brilliant. We like that.”

And we like this partnership. Cheers to the new union!