Camuto Group Bullish On New Shoe License

NEW YORK — Following the announcement last week that Greenwich, Conn.-based Camuto Group signed a multiyear licensing agreement for Kensiegirl footwear, Camuto President Bob Galvin was optimistic about the potential reach of the new collection.

Though the footwear will be targeted toward consumers between the ages of 14 and 24, the core price point of $49 to $59 could boost the brand’s appeal to an older consumer, especially in the current economic climate.

“It will be a great price value equation in the junior’s market, but we think it will transcend junior’s,” Galvin said. “Shoppers are trading down to this price point, and we do expect to get some consumers from the $89 [price range] fallout.”

The footwear collection for Kensiegirl — which is owned by Liz Claiborne along with sister brands Kensie and Mac & Jac — will be created to complement the apparel line, explained Keith Brown, president of private-label brands for Camuto Group.

“We’re going after key silhouettes and looks of the season and working very closely with apparel in design and color,” said Brown.

The collection will debut at the FFANY show in June and a larger collection will hit for spring ’10, noted Galvin, adding that footwear will appear in the brand’s advertising campaigns. Target retailers include accounts where the Kensiegirl apparel is sold, including Macy’s, Belk and Dillard’s.

“The Kensie and Kensiegirl brands are doing exceptionally well at retail,” Galvin said.

Looking ahead, Galvin said Camuto Group is evaluating opportunities for additional licensing deals.

Wolff Shoe previously held the footwear license for the Kensie brand, but terminated the arrangement in December 2008.

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