Keds, the lifestyle sneaker brand based in Lexington, said it has signed a multi-year deal with popular singer-songwriter Taylor Swift.
Keds has evolved to the point where its cachet seems to be most appreciated by girls and young women, and many of them are likely to be fans of Swift’s. According to Keds, Swift “embodies the Keds spirit, style, and sensibility.”
In a statement, Keds Brand president Rick Blackshaw offered his views on the brand’s sensibility.
“Taylor has become an inspiration to millions and a shining example of what can happen when you set your mind to something,” Blackshaw said. “Keds resonates with bold, unique girls who are brave enough to be themselves. This understanding is the most important thing we share with our fans, and we’re committed to helping girls everywhere look great but feel even better.”
Via a multimedia campaign, Keds said it will be encouraging “young women to share their stories of strength, creating a global community of brave girls who inspire and motivate each other to live their lives to the fullest. The initiative will be supported by scholarship opportunities, social media initiatives, video content, and limited edition product perfect for every part of a girl’s life.”
Keds had been owned by a Kansas company called Collective Brands Inc., which operated the Payless and Stride Rite shoe store chains.
In May, it was disclosed that Wolverine Worldwide Inc., which owns such brands as Hush Puppies, and private investment firms Blum Capital Partners and Golden Gate Capital were planning to buy Collective Brands for about $1.32 billion.
As part of the deal, Wolverine planned to acquire Collective Brands’ Performance + Lifestyle Group, which includes the wholesale and retail operations of the Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, Stride Rite, and Keds brands.