Kenneth Cole is a trendy old sole. Known for its shoes, Kenneth
Cole Productions makes stylish apparel and accessories under the
Kenneth Cole New York, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Unlisted, and Gentle
Souls names. Kenneth Cole licenses its name globally for hosiery,
luggage, watches, and eyewear. It continues to expand, adding new
lines for women and children, as well as fragrances. About 4,700
department and specialty stores carry its products. Kenneth Cole
primarily sells its products through roughly 60 outlet stores and
through catalogs and websites. The company is controlled by its
chairman and founder, Kenneth Cole.
The company focuses on designing, sourcing, and marketing a
broad range of footwear, apparel, handbags, and accessories under
several brand names, including Kenneth Cole New York, Kenneth Cole
Reaction, Unlisted, and Gentle Souls.
The company's goods are made outside the US by contractors in
Italy and China, among other locations in Europe and Asia.
In 2016 Kenneth Cole announced plans to shutter the majority of
its stores and almost exclusively sell its products online. By the
summer of 2017, all 63 Kenneth Cole outlet stores will be closed,
leaving only two full-price stores; one in New York and another in
Arlington, Virginia. The move is a new business model for Kenneth
Cole, which has recently faced increased competition from other
similarly positioned brands. The company is now focused on online
spending increases without the high costs associated with
maintaining and staffing a traditional brick-and-mortar operation.
Its growth strategy is also focused on growing its brand through
all social media channels.