Adidas made major moves on Wednesday, announcing that it would be opening a new design studio in Brooklyn, N.Y., early next year — and that it would be staffed by three design veterans recruited from Nike.
Designers Denis Dekovic, Marc Dolce and Mark Miner will start work in 2015, Adidas spokeswoman Lauren Lamkin confirmed. Under the three designers, the Brooklyn studio will be focused on setting the design direction for Adidas and “elevat[ing] the company’s direct interaction with consumers,” the company said in a release.
Both moves should elevate the German brand’s efforts to make Adidas a U.S.-friendly brand, which Adidas North America president Mark King told Footwear News was a brand priority.
“The future is about creating an Americanized brand called Adidas that resonates with the American athlete,” King said.
“It really shows that Adidas is getting serious about making product that’s appropriate for the U.S. market,” said Matt Powell, an analyst with SportsOneSource. “These guys were rising stars at Nike, and the Brooklyn move is a good one. They’ll find people who don’t want to go to Portland, Ore., but will be happy to be in Brooklyn.”
Dekovic was most recently football footwear design director at Nike, with experience in women’s, basketball and tennis. Dolce was a design director with experience in training, running, women’s and lifestyle, with extensive experience in Nike’s Sportswear division. Miner, formerly senior footwear designer at Nike, has experience in running, women’s and basketball, and is known for his work on the Nike Free Run style.
“The Brooklyn Creative Studio will be a small but essential operation aimed at exploring design direction for the brand. This facility will be an open-source creative center allowing us to connect and collaborate with consumers in a way we’ve never done before,” Paul Gaudio, Adidas global creative director, said in a statement.