In 2007, Payless ShoeSource acquired Collective Brand Performance + Lifestyle Group (formerly the Stride Rite Corp-oration) to develop a leading lifestyle, fashion, and performance brand conglomerate for footwear and related accessories.





  • Headquarters: Topeka, Kan.
  • Number of locations as of January 2011: 4,844
  • Brands: Champion, Sims, Strikeforce
  • 2010 net sales: $3.38 billion, a 2% increase over the prior year 

Today, the company operates three business units, including Payless ShoeSource, established in 1956; Collective Brands Performance + Lifestyle Group, founded in 1919 as Stride Rite; and Collective Licensing International, which licenses Vision Street Wear, Airwalk, and Lamar Snowboards.

Now a brand powerhouse, Collective Brands holds the rights to popular names such as Saucony, Keds, and Sperry Top-Sider. Matthew  Rubel, chairman, CEO, and president of Collective Brands said, “The strength of our hybrid business model enabled us to grow in a variety of ways in 2010. [Performance + Lifestyle Group] delivered record annual sales and earnings. Payless successfully expanded franchising, accessory categories, and its footwear house of brands. Going into 2011, we have great momentum in wholesale and international, improving domestic retail sales, and a strong balance sheet.”