HanesBrands pays Wolverine $90M for Champion footwear trademarks

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Brendan Hoffman. Courtesy Wolverine Worldwide

Wolverine Worldwide sold the Champion trademarks for footwear in the U.S. and Canada to HanesBrands in a move that resolves an ongoing lawsuit.

The Rockford-based maker of footwear and apparel said last week its wholly owned subsidiary, Keds, sold the Champion trademarks for footwear in the U.S. and Canada to its longtime licensee, HanesBrands, for $90 million in cash.

Under the agreement, Wolverine Worldwide retains a perpetual license to continue using the Champion trademark on certain footwear, including the Keds Champion sneaker that has been a mainstay of its Keds brand for decades.

The transaction resolves a lawsuit that began in 2020 between HanesBrands and Keds over the use of the Champion brand for footwear.

“This transaction represents a unique opportunity to simplify our business model while at the same time securing a significant amount of cash at a meaningful multiple of future expected royalty streams,” said Brendan Hoffman, Wolverine Worldwide’s president and CEO.

“Also, by retaining a perpetual license, our Keds brand will continue to market and sell the iconic Keds Champion sneaker that its consumers have worn and loved for generations.”

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