Nike Returns to Wholesale With DSW, Macy’s Partnerships

Nike products will once again appear on store shelves and websites at DSW and Macy’s starting in fall 2023, according to executives on DSW and Macy’s earnings calls. The selections will include items from multiple apparel types across the men’s, women’s and kids categories, and marks the return of Nike to wholesale after it began slashing third-party offerings in late 2021.

The return of Nike in Q4 2023 could help improve revenue for Designer Brands, which saw a sales decline of 10.7% to $742.1 million in Q1 2023, which ended April 29, 2023. Comparable sales decreased by 10.4% during the same period. Designer Brands also will lean on its recent acquisitions of brands including Topo Athletic and Le Tigre to help improve its prospects.

“Obviously, we’re very excited about the changes that the teams are making in the overall product portfolio,” said Doug Howe, CEO of Designer Brands on a call with investors. “Elevating our relationship with Nike is obviously among them. They’ve been great partners. We’ve had ongoing dialogue for the past several months.”

Designer Brands’ fiscal 2023 guidance projects that its overall U.S. retail sales could fall in the mid-to-high single digits compared to fiscal 2022, a decline that could be exacerbated if consumer spending doesn’t recover as quickly as the retailer hopes. However, the return of Nike is expected to improve the brand’s Q4 performance in comparison to the first half of the year.

Le Tigre also will give DSW a boost by launching just in time for the back to school season, according to Howe: “This brand provides us with another unique opportunity to offer fashion forward athletic footwear at a reasonable price point and furthers our own brand reach into the athletic category,” he said. “Much like Keds, it’s a heritage brand with a rich history. It offers great versatility and lifestyle and approach, and we anticipate customers will be excited to see this online and in stores.”

Macy’s Rekindles ‘Mutually Beneficial Relationship’ with Nike

Macy’s will begin carrying an expanded selection of Nike products in October, including apparel, plus size women’s, big and tall men’s, kids, bags and gear, both online and in “key locations nationwide,” according to CEO Jeff Gennette. Nike products will appear in additional stores in spring 2024.

Macy’s expects the return of Nike to be “a real catalyst without cannibalizing much else in the balance of the apparel assortments,” according to Gennette. He also noted that Macy’s has more than 40 million customers across multiple categories who have been asking for Nike products, which will make the relationship beneficial for both brands.

“We’re committing to a long-term partnership together and our opportunity to basically provide our customer a multi-brand or a multi-category experience that is elevated and enhanced,” said Gennette on a call with investors. “We’re not quoting what we used to do [with Nike], but obviously, it’s one of the most important brands for our customer. We had lots of customers that were disappointed that we didn’t carry it over the past year. So this is a very important [return] for many of our customers.”