This excerpt taken from the WWW 10-K filed Feb 26, 2008.
Branded Footwear, Apparel and Licensing.
The Company sources and markets a broad range of footwear styles including shoes, boots and sandals under many recognizable brand names including Bates®, Cat®, Harley-Davidson®, Hush Puppies®, HyTest®, Merrell®, Patagonia®, Sebago® and Wolverine®. The Company combines quality materials and skilled workmanship from around the world to produce footwear according to its specifications at both Company-owned and independent manufacturing facilities. The Company also markets Merrell® and Wolverine® brand apparel and licenses its brands for use on non-footwear products including apparel, eyewear, watches, socks, handbags and plush toys. Current significant licensing programs include Hush Puppies® apparel, eyewear, watches, socks, handbags and plush toys, and Wolverine® brand gloves, eyewear, socks and headwear.
The Company's four branded apparel, footwear and licensing operating units are described below.
1. The Outdoor Group. The Outdoor Group consists of Merrell® and Patagonia® Footwear and Merrell® Apparel. Outdoor Group products include performance outdoor and hiking footwear, casual and after-sport footwear and performance and casual Merrell® Apparel.
Merrell® Footwear. The Merrell® footwear line consists primarily of technical hiking, rugged outdoor and outdoor-inspired casual footwear designed for backpacking, day hiking and everyday use. The Merrell® footwear line also includes the "After-Sport" category, incorporating Merrell® footwear's technical hiking and outdoor expertise with Wolverine Performance Leathers™ and other technical materials to create footwear with unique styling, performance and comfort features. Merrell® footwear products are sold primarily through outdoor specialty retailers, department stores and catalogs. Merrell® footwear is marketed in approximately 160 countries and territories worldwide.
Merrell® Apparel. The Merrell® Apparel line consists primarily of technical outdoor and outdoor-inspired casual apparel. In addition to Merrell® Apparel, the Outdoor Group markets Merrell® packs, bags and luggage.
Patagonia® Footwear. In 2005, the Company entered into a license agreement providing the Company with exclusive worldwide rights to manufacture, market, distribute and sell footwear under the Patagonia®, Water Girl® and other trademarks. The Outdoor Group launched its Patagonia® Footwear line in Spring 2007.
2. Wolverine Footwear Group. The Wolverine Footwear Group encompasses footwear primarily under the Wolverine®, Bates®, and HyTest® brands and markets footwear designed with performance and comfort features to serve a variety of work, outdoor and lifestyle functions. The Wolverine Footwear Group also markets Wolverine® brand apparel.
Wolverine® Work and Industrial Footwear. The Wolverine® brand has built its reputation by offering high quality work boots and shoes that incorporate innovative technologies to deliver comfort and durability. The Wolverine® brand, which has been in existence for 125 years, markets work and outdoor footwear in three categories: (i) work and industrial; (ii) outdoor sport; and (iii) rugged casual. The development of DuraShocks® technology and MultiShox® technology, has allowed the Wolverine® brand to introduce a broad line of work footwear with a focus on comfort. The Wolverine Fusion®, DuraShocks SR™ and Wolverine Compressor® technologies represent the Company's tradition of comfortable work and industrial footwear, a tradition that is continued and enhanced with the development of the MultiShox® Individual Comfort System and the new Contour Welt™ product line. The Wolverine® work product line features work boots and shoes, including steel toe boots and shoes, targeting male and female industrial and farm workers. The Wolverine® rugged casual and outdoor sport product lines incorporate DuraShocks® technology and other comfort features into products designed for casual and outdoor sport use. The rugged casual line targets active lifestyles and includes trail shoes, rugged casuals and outdoor sandals. The outdoor sport line is designed to meet the demands of hunters, fishermen and other active outdoor sportsmen and women. Warmth, waterproofing and comfort are achieved through the use of Gore-Tex® (a registered trademark of W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc.) and Thinsulate® (a registered trademark of Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company) brand fabrics, the Company's performance leathers and patented DuraShocks® technologies.
Wolverine® Apparel and Licensing. The Wolverine Footwear Group markets a line of work and rugged casual Wolverine® brand apparel. In addition, the Wolverine® brand is licensed for use on eyewear, headwear, gloves and socks.
Bates® Uniform Footwear. The Bates Uniform Footwear Division is an industry leader in supplying footwear to military and civilian uniform users. The Bates Uniform Footwear Division utilizes DuraShocks®, DuraShocks SR™, CoolTech® and other proprietary comfort technologies in the design of its military-style boots and oxfords including the Bates®, Enforcer Series® and Special Ops™ footwear lines. The Bates Uniform Footwear Division contracts with the U.S. Department of Defense and the militaries of several foreign countries to supply military footwear. Civilian uniform uses include police, security, postal, restaurant and other industrial occupations. Bates Uniform Footwear Division's products are also distributed through specialty retailers and catalogs.
HyTest® Safety Footwear. The HyTest® product line consists primarily of high-quality work boots and shoes designed to protect industrial workers from foot injuries. HyTest® footwear incorporates various specialty safety features into its product lines,
3. The Heritage Brands Group. The Heritage Brands Group consists of Caterpillar® Footwear, Harley-Davidson® Footwear and Sebago® Footwear. Sebago® Footwear was recently added to the Heritage Brands Group.
Caterpillar® Footwear. Pursuant to a license arrangement with Caterpillar Inc., the Company has exclusive worldwide rights to manufacture, market and distribute footwear under the Caterpillar®, Cat & Design®, Walking Machines® and other trademarks. The Company believes the association with Cat® equipment enhances the reputation of its footwear for quality, ruggedness and durability. Cat® brand footwear products include work boots and shoes, sport boots, rugged casuals and lifestyle footwear, including lines of work and casual footwear featuring iTechnology™ and Hidden Tracks® comfort features. In addition, the Company also manufactures and markets Cat® Marine Power® footwear, designed for industrial and recreational marine uses. Cat® footwear products target work and industrial users and active lifestyle users. Cat® footwear is marketed in approximately 135 countries and territories worldwide. Cat®, Caterpillar®, Cat & Design®, Walking Machines® and Marine Power® are registered trademarks of Caterpillar Inc.
Harley-Davidson® Footwear. Pursuant to a license arrangement with the Harley-Davidson Motor Company, the Company has the exclusive right to manufacture, market, distribute and sell Harley-Davidson® brand footwear throughout the world. Harley-Davidson® brand footwear products include motorcycle, casual, fashion, work and western footwear for men, women and children. Harley-Davidson® footwear is sold globally through a network of independent Harley-Davidson® dealerships as well as through department stores and specialty retailers. Harley-Davidson® is a registered trademark of H-D Michigan, Inc.
Sebago® Footwear. The Sebago® product line consists primarily of performance nautical and American-inspired casual footwear for men and women such as boat shoes and handsewn loafers that have been manufactured and distributed since 1946. Highly recognized Sebago® line extensions include Sebago Docksides®, Sebago Drysides™, Sebago Campsides™ and Athletic Marine. The Sebago® product line is marketed in approximately 110 countries and territories worldwide. The Sebago® manufacturing and design tradition of quality componentry, durability, comfort and "Americana" heritage is further supported by targeted distribution to better-grade independent, marine and department store retailers throughout the world.
4. The Hush Puppies Company. Since 1958, the Hush Puppies® brand has been a leader in the casual footwear market. The brand offers shoes and boots for men, women and children, and is marketed in approximately 130 countries and territories. The modern styling is complemented by a variety of comfort features and proprietary technologies that have earned the