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SOURCE Wolverine World Wide, Inc.
NEW YORK, June 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Wolverine Worldwide (NYSE: WWW) and its Merrell brand have been honored with two key awards from the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA). The Company received the prestigious Advocate of the Year award, and Wolverine's Merrell brand was chosen as the inaugural winner of the Brand Focus award, which is given to the brand deemed "most-loved" by scoring the highest brand loyalty among footwear consumers in the United States.
The awards were announced at the FDRA's 70th anniversary celebration event held in conjunction with the organization's Annual Members Meeting, which was attended by more than 150 footwear executives from leading global footwear companies. Blake Krueger, Wolverine Worldwide's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, accepted the Advocate of the Year award and Gene McCarthy, Merrell's brand President, was on hand to accept the Brand Focus award.
Wolverine Worldwide, Advocate of the Year award – The FDRA annually gives this award in recognition of the footwear company that worked tirelessly on behalf of the U.S. footwear industry and U.S. consumers in Washington, D.C. during the year. Wolverine Worldwide is the parent Company of 16 dynamic lifestyle brands that market footwear, apparel and accessories in every corner of the world. With an industry-leading portfolio of brands, including brands such as Merrell, Sperry Top-Sider, Saucony, Cat Footwear and Keds, the Company has more than 1,000 years of combined brand equity and is committed to developing, marketing and distributing products that bring style to purpose and consistently exceed consumer expectations. Through a strong global network of partners, the Company annually markets over 100 million units of footwear, apparel and accessories around the world.
Merrell, Brand Focus award – This is the first year for this award and it is co-sponsored by the FDRA and the leading market research company, NPD Group. The award is intended to recognize the footwear brand with the highest overall brand loyalty among U.S. consumers, as measured by the NPD Group's extensive, industry-leading research. Merrell's win is particularly notable, considering that the NPD Group data ranked Merrell the highest in both men's and women's categories. Merrell is an outdoor brand that empowers people to challenge themselves in the great outside. The brand's mission is to inspire people to "Achieve. Never Settle. Hit the Trail. OUT. PERFORM."
Commenting on the awards, Blake W. Krueger stated, "At Wolverine Worldwide, we have worked very closely over the years with the FDRA and our many other esteemed footwear colleagues to benefit the footwear industry and our consumers, and we are honored to be recognized for those efforts with the Advocate of the Year award. We are equally pleased that our Merrell brand was recognized by the FDRA and NPD Group as the footwear brand with the highest measurable brand loyalty among U.S. consumers. Merrell has consistently ranked as one of the top brands that consumers will come back to time and time again – something for which we are very proud. Delivering our very best products and creating powerful brand experiences for our consumers are what the entire Wolverine Worldwide team strives for every single day."
Matt Priest, President of the FDRA also commented, "Congratulations to Blake Krueger and the entire Wolverine Worldwide team for being recognized for their numerous contributions. We are also extremely pleased to recognize the Merrell brand as the inaugural winner of the Brand Focus award, clearly demonstrating the brand's deep and lasting impact with footwear consumers."
With a commitment to service and product excellence, Wolverine World Wide, Inc. is one of the world's leading marketers of branded casual, active lifestyle, work, outdoor sport, athletic, children's and uniform footwear and apparel. The Company's portfolio of highly recognized brands includes: Merrell®, Sperry Top-Sider®, Hush Puppies®, Saucony®, Wolverine®, Keds®, Stride Rite®, Sebago®, Cushe®, Chaco®, Bates®, HYTEST®, and Soft Style®. The Company also is the global footwear licensee of popular brands including Cat®, Harley-Davidson® and Patagonia®. The Company's products are carried by leading retailers in the U.S. and globally in over 200 countries and territories. For additional information, please visit our website, www.wolverineworldwide.com.
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