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Designer Brands Inc.
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About Designer Brands Inc.

Designer Brands (formerly DSW) is one of North America's largest designers, producers and retailers of footwear and accessories.. The company offers its products to men, women, and kids through around 665 stores and on e-commerce platforms. Its DSW banner stores average of approximately 20,300 square feet and offer a wide assortment of brand name of dress, casual, and athletic shoes, as well as a complementary array of handbags, hosiery, jewelry and accessories. The company also operates, through ABG, over 280 Stein Mart stores,, and Frugal Fannie's store. Designer Brands designs and produces footwear and accessories through Camuto Group. Designer Brands was founded in 1969.


Designer Brands operates in three reportable segments: the US retail segment, the Canada segment, and the Brand Portfolio segment. Together, US retail and Canada retail segments are referred to as the Retail segment (the two segments accounts for nearly 85% of sales).

The Retail segment includes DWS, The Shoe Company, and Shoe Warehouse banner stores. The stores offer a wide range of brand name dress, casual and athletic footwear, and accessories for women, men, and kids in stores and on e-commerce platforms.

The Brand Portfolio segment designs, develops, and sources fashion footwear and accessories. The company provides retailer customers and consumers a portfolio of licensed brands, including Vince Camuto, Louise et Cie, Sole Society, CC Corso Como, Jessica Simpson, Lucky Brand, and others. The segment accounts for nearly 15% of sales.

Its Affiliated Business Group provides services to more than 280 Stein Mart stores and as well as a Frugal Fannie's store through an ongoing supply arrangement.

Sales to its women's footwear represent about 65% of total sales while men's footwear accounts for about 20%. Accessories and other (including kids' footwear) accounts for the rest. The company purchases directly from over 580 domestic and foreign vendors. Its top three third-party vendors in the aggregate supply approximately 20% of its retail merchandise.

Geographic Reach

Headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, Designer Brands has about 665 retail locations throughout the US and Canada. It operates some ten showrooms in various US locations as well as foreign sourcing offices in China (two) and Brazil (one). Its distribution centers are located in Ohio and New Jersey while a fulfillment center is located in Ohio.

Sales and Marketing

Designer Brands' retail segment sells through stores operated in the US under the DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse banner and its related e-commerce site, and in Canada under The Shoe Company, Shoe Warehouse, DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse banners and related e-commerce sites. The Brand Portfolio segment sells through the sale of wholesale products to retailers, design and buying agent for products under private labels, and the sale of branded products on direct-to-consumer e-commerce sites. The company's marketing costs were $123.9 million in 2019, $121.4 million in 2018, and $83.8 million in 2017.

Financial Performance

Designer Brands has seen an upward trend in revenues in recent years. Its annual revenues have risen more than 30% since 2015. Its net income however, has shifted over the same period with a loss in 2018.

Revenue grew to $3.5 billion in fiscal 2019, an approximately 9% increase from the year prior. The increase was driven by incremental net sales from acquired business prior to the anniversary of their acquisitions, a 1% increase in comparable sales, and an increase for non-comparable store sales.

However, the shoe retailer's net income has been uneven in recent years. Its net income for fiscal 2019 was $94.5 million, primarily related to integration and restructuring expenses which was also a recovery from its net loss in fiscal 2018 of $20.5 million.

Cash on hand at the end of fiscal 2019 was $86.6 million. Cash provided by operating activities was $196.7 million in 2019, while investing activities used $27.4 million, mainly for property and equipment as well as purchase of available-for-sale investments. Financing activities used another $183.4 million, mostly for payments on revolving line of credit.


DSW debuted a new name, Designer Brands, in 2019, to better reflect the company's expertise in building footwear brands and offering differentiated experiences. In addition to the new name, the company announced a three-year strategy focused on leveraging its business model to continue participating in 5% of all footwear transactions in North America; capitalizing on increased buying power, leverage, and production cost insights with vendors; and offering differentiated products and experiences.

In late 2019, the company launched Shoe VIP, an innovative points-based loyalty program created for and by its members. Shoe VIP replaces the existing Shoe Lovers Rewards (SLR) program providing a more compelling reward experience with greater choice and richer rewards to four million Canadian loyalty members. In addition to the creation of enhanced member benefits and rewards, the program design also included the definition of a new brand identity.

Additionally, the company partnered with Midwestern supermarket chain Hy-Vee, Inc. in April 2020. This partnership is launched with an online experience, offering customers DSW's digital experience via DSW and Hy-Vee are developing buy-online and pick-up in-store capabilities, and the deal will roll out several DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse shop-in-shops in Hy-Vee stores over time. The partnership allows Designer Brands the ability to deliver differentiated products and experiences as part of its long-term strategy for growth.

Designer Brands Inc.

810 Dsw Dr
Columbus, OH 43219-1828
Phone: 1 (614) 237-7100

Firm Stats

Employer Type: Publicly Owned
Stock Symbol: DBI
Stock Exchange: , NYSE
Vice Chairman and Chief Merchandising Officer: Deborah L. Ferrée
CEO and Director: Roger L. Rawlins
Chairman: Jay L. Schottenstein
Employees (This Location): 380
Employees (All Locations): 15,800

Major Office Locations

Columbus, OH

Other Locations

Hoover, AL
Huntsville, AL
Mobile, AL
Little Rock, AR
Rogers, AR
Avondale, AZ
Gilbert, AZ
Peoria, AZ
Scottsdale, AZ
Brea, CA
Brentwood, CA
Canoga Park, CA
Chula Vista, CA
Costa Mesa, CA
Daly City, CA
Downey, CA
Dublin, CA
El Centro, CA
Fremont, CA
La Jolla, CA
La Quinta, CA
Los Angeles, CA
Morgan Hill, CA
Novato, CA
Ontario, CA
Palm Desert, CA
Pleasant Hill, CA
Redlands, CA
Roseville, CA
San Diego, CA
San Jose, CA
San Mateo, CA
Santee, CA
Thousand Oaks, CA
Torrance, CA
West Covina, CA
Colorado Springs, CO
Fort Collins, CO
Lakewood, CO
Longmont, CO
Danbury, CT
Fairfield, CT
Manchester, CT
North Haven, CT
Coconut Creek, FL
Cutler Bay, FL
Fort Myers, FL
Gainesville, FL
Kissimmee, FL
Miami, FL
Naples, FL
Ocala, FL
Orlando, FL
Pembroke Pines, FL
Pensacola, FL
West Palm Beach, FL
Alpharetta, GA
Atlanta, GA
Augusta, GA
Cumming, GA
Lawrenceville, GA
Macon, GA
Newnan, GA
Norcross, GA
Stockbridge, GA
Algonquin, IL
Bolingbrook, IL
Chicago, IL
Dekalb, IL
Geneva, IL
Lake Zurich, IL
Lincolnshire, IL
Mchenry, IL
Northbrook, IL
Orland Park, IL
South Barrington, IL
Vernon Hills, IL
Bloomington, IN
Carmel, IN
Greenwood, IN
Indianapolis, IN
Merrillville, IN
Noblesville, IN
Plainfield, IN
Schererville, IN
South Bend, IN
Crestview Hills, KY
Louisville, KY
New Orleans, LA
Shreveport, LA
Braintree, MA
Burlington, MA
Hyannis, MA
Marlborough, MA
North Attleboro, MA
Peabody, MA
Plymouth, MA
Saugus, MA
Stoughton, MA
Woburn, MA
California, MD
Frederick, MD
Gambrills, MD
Hagerstown, MD
Laurel, MD
Waldorf, MD
South Portland, ME
Ann Arbor, MI
Brighton, MI
Chesterfield, MI
Kalamazoo, MI
Lansing, MI
Norton Shores, MI
Orion, MI
Rochester Hills, MI
Saginaw, MI
Troy, MI
Burnsville, MN
Maple Grove, MN
Minneapolis, MN
Rochester, MN
Saint Paul, MN
Lees Summit, MO
Asheville, NC
Durham, NC
Greensboro, NC
Matthews, NC
Raleigh, NC
Omaha, NE
Salem, NH
Bridgewater, NJ
Cherry Hill, NJ
Livingston, NJ
Marlton, NJ
Mount Laurel, NJ
Toms River, NJ
Wayne, NJ
Reno, NV
Albany, NY
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Monroeville, PA
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Springfield, PA
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Warwick, RI
Greenville, SC
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