DSW, Inc.

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DSW Inc.
Type Public (NYSEDSW)
Industry Retail
Founded 1991
Headquarters Columbus, Ohio, USA
Number of locations 431
Products Footwear, Handbags, Accessories
Website dsw.com

DSW Inc. formerly Designer Shoe Warehouse, is a speciality branded footwear retailer, headquartered in Columbus, Ohio.


DSW Inc. (NYSE: DSW), DSW (Designer Shoe Warehouse) Inc. is a leading branded footwear and accessories retailer that offers a huge selection of brand name and designer footwear and accessories for women, men, and kids. DSW has over 400 stores across the United States and Puerto Rico, as well as 366 leased departments for other retailers under the Affiliated Business Group. In 2014, DSW made its first foray internationally into Canada opening two locations in the Greater Toronto Area.


Early history[edit]

DSW opened its first store in July 1991 in Dublin, Ohio. In 1998, Value City Department Stores, Inc. purchased DSW. In December 2004, Retail Ventures, Inc. consolidated several of Value City's subsidiary brands. Until July 5, 2005, DSW operated as a wholly owned subsidiary of Retail Ventures, Inc.; afterward, Retail Ventures retained 60% of DSW Inc.'s outstanding shares. Months prior to the initial public offering (IPO), DSW changed its name from Shonac Corporation, to DSW Inc.

In 2006, the IT departments of Retail Ventures and DSW were merged into a separate company called Brand Technology Services LLC (BTS), a wholly owned subsidiary of DSW Inc. In 2009, DSW changed the name of BTS to DSW Information Technology LLC (DSW IT).

In early 2008, DSW launched its e-commerce website, and in 2011 a mobile version of dsw.com was released so customers could more easily shop from their mobile phones and tablets.


The DSW brand promise is "Designer shoes. Warehouse prices." and the company delivers an experience of "breathtaking assortment, irresistible value, and simple convenience." DSW stores average approximately 22,000 square feet and stock nearly 25,000 pairs of shoes per location. This helps DSW appeal to a very broad demographic of shoppers, across the country.

Interior of a DSW in Springfield, Virginia

DSW offers countless name brands within stores and online, and sells 12 private-label brands including Abella, Aston Grey, Audrey Brooke, Bedford Block, Crown Vintage, Kelly & Katie, Levity, Lulu Townsend, Mercanti Fiorentini, Mix No. 6, Studio Ink, and Taryn by Taryn Rose.

The company is known for its DSW Rewards program, where members are referred to as "Shoe Lovers." DSW also maintains an active presence on various social networks. These social channels give DSW’s "Shoe Lover community" a chance to participate in contests, win prizes, and stay informed on the latest shoe trends and DSW news.

DSW also authors a blog, Do You Speak Shoe Lover?, with stories of "epic shoe love," fashion and styling advice.

In early October 2013, DSW released their first book, Do You Speak Shoe Lover?, which earned a spot on the New York Times Best Seller’s list. The book, similar to the blog by the same name, contains stories from customers and Shoe Lovers around the world, proclaiming their love and dedication to shoes and the brand of DSW.

On October 26, 2013, the company hosted the first National Shoe Lover Day (NSLD) in stores across the country, where customers in each DSW had the opportunity to win free shoes for one year, among additional giveaways and prizes.

On April 15, 2014 DSW announced that it had paid $62 million for a 44 percent interest in Town Shoes Limited of Canada, with an option to buy the rest of the company in a few years.[1]


  1. ^ Tim Feran. "DSW takes 1st step in Canadian market". The Columbus Dispatch. 

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