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Reebok Has a New Partner in China

Authentic Brands Group doesn’t officially own Reebok yet, but it’s laying the groundwork for Adidas’ one-time sibling.

The New York-based owner of Nine West, Vince Camuto and Juicy Couture signed a seventh operating partner for Reebok, the athletic brand it will control if its $2.46 billion purchase officially closes as expected this quarter.

Tristate Holdings Ltd., which already works with ABG-owned brands including Nautica and Spyder, will be Reebok’s main licensee for China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, responsible for branded retail stores, e-commerce and wholesale distribution for men’s, women’s and kids’ footwear, sportswear, outerwear and activewear.

“Having worked together for several years, we have established a trusted relationship with Tristate and are thrilled to continue our joint success as they take on the role of Reebok operator within Greater China,” ABG founder and chairman Jamie Salter said. “Securing an expert operating partner in the region has been a strategic focus in order to solidify the brand’s position within this crucial market.”

Tristate chairman and CEO Peter Wang, describing Reebok as a “highly sought-after brand,” said the company is “confident” in the label’s direction under “ABG’s ownership and strategic development worldwide.”

“We look forward to bringing Reebok, a brand with incredible heritage and strength, into our 35-plus years’ experience of managing premium brands in the region,” he added.

The Tristate deal caps off a spree of signings for ABG and Reebok over the past two months. They’ve hammered out arrangements with SPARC Group, ABG’s stateside retail operating partner, and Reebok’s Boston office as the headquarters of the newly created Reebok Design Group, or RDG. SPARC, a joint venture partnership between ABG and mall operator Simon Property Group, will manage sourcing, manufacturing, and wholesale distribution for men’s, women’s and kid’s apparel and footwear.

In Latin America, The Falic Group will operate Reebok outside of Mexico, Brazil and Argentina, three of the region’s most strategic economies. Accent Group will oversee operations across Australia and New Zealand. MGS, Reebok’s existing partner in Israel, will continue in that role under a new ABG agreement.

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Mumbai-based Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd. is responsible for Reebok operations serving India, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

And more recently, a strategic partnership with JD Sports Fashion expands the Reebok brand across the British retail giant’s company-owned operations in North America and Europe. The non-exclusive arrangement marks the first of its kind in the two regions, allowing JD to stock Reebok-branded and RDG-sourced apparel and footwear for men, woman and children in over 2,850 company-owned stores and e-commerce sites under the JD Sports, Finish Line, DTLR, Shoe Palace, Sprinter and SportZone nameplates starting in Fall 2022.