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Steve Madden's Shoe Business Is Hurting Because Of Lack Of Footwear Trends And Low Mall Traffic

Jul 31, 2014 04:14 PM EDT
Steve Madden
(Photo : Getty Images/Astrid Stawiarz)

The current sneaker craze is hurting Steve Madden's business.

According to WWD, the footwear brand posted a decline in earnings and sales for the second quarter. After a successful first quarter, Steve Madden reported a 1 percent decrease in sales, with net sales dropping to $295.7 million from $297.6 million a year earlier. Earnings declined from $29 million to $28 million.

According to Edward Rosenfeld, Steve Madden's chairman and CEO, there are two issues causing this decline in earnings and sales: poor mall traffic and a lack of trends in the footwear industry.

"Sneakers are doing better. So when you're a shoe company, you always feel a little pinch when that happens," Madden told Fashionista in an interview earlier this month.

"All the guys in Europe are making the sneakers - everybody, Céline, Chanel. So it's very challenging for me to make sneakers, by the way. Usually it involves more lead time, and technology, and it's hard for a shoe guy to do sneakers. I'm not even going to pretend to be in the league with Nike or those guys. So we'll do sneakers that will be built like shoes. It will be challenging because of the materials, and they require a lot of molds, but I see it."

Earlier this year, it was announced that Steve Madden acquired Brian Atwood from owner The Jones Group after Atwood exercised his buyback option when The Jones Group decided to look into selling his company.

"We're already in contemporary. Now we're in super luxury as well. We're excited to be in both businesses," Madden said.

"Brian Atwood is a premier designer, and he's also American, which I love, although everybody gets upset when I say that. When you go to the floors at Barneys, there aren't many American designers. Brian is a Midwest boy, and he's brilliant. We like that."

There's still no word on how Atwood's business is doing following the acquisition.

Because of its weak second quarter, Steve Madden has lowered its guidance for the full year.

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