Foot Locker

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Foot Locker, Inc.
  • Woolworth Co. (1988–1997)
  • Venator Group (1997–2001)
PredecessorF. W. Woolworth Company
FoundersF. W. Woolworth and Santiago Lopez
Headquarters330 West 34th Street, ,
Number of locations
3,310 stores
Area served
Key people
  • Foot Locker
  • Kids Foot Locker
  • Lady Foot Locker
  • Footaction
  • SIX:02
  • Runner's Point
  • Sidestep
  • Champs Sports
  • Eastbay
RevenueIncrease US$7.94 billion (2018)[1]
Decrease US$571 million (2017)[2]
Decrease US$284 million (2017)[2]
Total assetsIncrease US$3.961 billion (2017)[2]
Total equityDecrease US$2.519 billion (2017)[2]
Number of employees
32,175[3] (2017)

Foot Locker Retail, Inc. is an American sportswear and footwear retailer, with its headquarters in Midtown Manhattan, New York City,[4] and operating in 28 countries.

Although established in 1974, and founded as a separate company in 1988, Foot Locker's roots date to 1879, as it is a successor corporation to the F. W. Woolworth Company (“Woolworth's”), as many of its freestanding stores were originally Kinney Shoes and Woolworth's locations. The company operates the eponymous “Foot Locker” chain of athletic footwear retail outlets (along with “Kids Foot Locker” and “Lady Foot Locker” stores), and other athletic-based divisions including Champs Sports, Footaction USA, House of Hoops, and Eastbay/, which owns the rights to Final-Score. The company is also famous for its employees' uniforms at its flagship Foot Locker chain, resembling those of referees.

According to the company's filings with the SEC, as of January 28, 2017, Foot Locker, Inc. had 3,363 primarily mall-based stores in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia. Nearly 70% of its product is from Nike.[5]


In 1963, the F.W. Woolworth Company purchased the Kinney Shoe Corporation and operated it as a subsidiary. In the 1960s, Kinney branched into specialty shoe stores, including Stylco in 1967, Susie Casuals in 1968, and Foot Locker on September 12, 1974. The first Foot Locker opened in the Puente Hills Mall in City of Industry, California, and still is open today.[6] Woolworth also diversified its portfolio of specialty stores in the 1980s, including Afterthoughts, Northern Reflections, Rx Place, and Champs Sports. By 1989, the company was pursuing an aggressive strategy of multiple specialty store formats targeted at enclosed shopping malls. The idea was that if a particular concept failed at a given mall, the company could quickly replace it with a different concept. The company aimed for 10 stores in each of the country's major shopping malls, but this never came to pass as Woolworth never developed that many successful specialty store formats.

In 1988, the F.W. Woolworth Company incorporated a separate company called the Woolworth Corporation in the state of New York. The Woolworth Corporation was responsible for the operations of the Foot Locker stores, among the other specialty chains operated by Woolworth's. One of its first moves was the acquisition of Champs Sports and to rename itself the Woolworth Athletic Group.

During the 1980s and 1990s, the F.W. Woolworth Company's flagship department store chain fell into decline, ultimately culminating in the closure of the last stores operating under the name of Woolworth's in the United States in 1997. Deciding to continue aggressive expansion into the athletic business in the following years, the company acquired Eastbay in 1997, which was the largest athletic catalog retailer in the United States, as well as subsequent purchases of regional storefront retailers Sporting Goods (purchased in 1997) and The Athletic Fitters (purchased in 1998). After 1997, Wal-Mart replaced Woolworth in the Dow Jones average. The Woolworth Corporation remained the parent company of Foot Locker, and in 1998 it changed its name to "Venator Group, Inc." By the 1990s, Foot Locker was responsible for more than 70 percent of Kinney Shoe Corp. sales, while traditional shoe retailer Kinney was in decline. Venator announced the shuttering of the remaining Kinney Shoe and Footquarters stores on September 16, 1998.[citation needed]

On February 12, 1999, a federal jury in Austin awarded $341,000 to a former Foot Locker shoe store manager who said the company systematically discriminated against its African American employees by offering more opportunities for promotions to white managers.[7]

Foot Locker store, Tower City Center, Cleveland, Ohio
A Foot Locker branch in Bradford, West Yorkshire
Foot Locker in Hillcrest Mall
Foot Locker, Southside Wandsworth, London

As the "Foot Locker" brand had become the Woolworth/Venator company's top performing line, on November 2, 2001 Venator changed its name to Foot Locker, Inc.[8] On November 19, 2004, Foot Locker announced that its quarterly profit rose 19 percent, helped by stronger sales.[9]

In 2004, Foot Locker acquired the Footaction USA brand and approximately 350 stores from Footstar for $350 million.[10] On April 14, 2004, Foot Locker Inc. announced that it agreed to buy about 350 Footaction stores from bankrupt Footstar Inc. for $160 million to expand in urban areas.[11]

On January 10, 2005, the company announced that Nick Grayston was promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer of its Foot Locker U.S. division, succeeding Tim Finn who retired from the company.[12]

In 2007, Foot Locker joined with schoolPAX[13] to launch the Foot Locker School Rewards Program,[14] designed to provide charitable donations to schools who sign up and shop at Foot Locker with a custom-coded keytag or school code.

Foot Locker purchased CCS, a skateboarding equipment retailer, from Alloy for $103 Million in cash.[15]

In 2011, Foot Locker joined DoSomething.Org for the Foot Locker Scholar Athletes program, which honors high school athletes for demonstrating academic excellence as well as flexing their hearts on their sports team and in their communities.

On June 26, 2012, Foot Locker celebrated the 100th anniversary of the first stock offering made by its predecessor, the F. W. Woolworth Company, on the New York Stock Exchange by ringing the Closing Bell for the trading day.

In 2013, the company acquired the German retailer Runners Point Group.[16]

After not meeting corporate expectations, Foot Locker planned to close its CCS unit but instead sold it to Daddies Board Shop in 2014.[15]

Foot Locker has steadily risen in Fortune 500 rank, from 446 in 2011[17] to 363 in 2018.[18] Foot Locker has recorded a record turnover of 7.151 billion dollars at the end of the fiscal year.[19]

In 2019, Foot Locker invested in companies like GOAT, an online resale marketplace for sneakers.[20]






  1. ^ "Foot Locker revenue Company Profile". Craft. Retrieved October 23, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "Ralph Lauren Corporation 2017 Annual Report (Form 10-K)". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. March 2018.
  3. ^ "Foot Locker". Fortune. Retrieved December 18, 2018.
  4. ^ "Foot Locker, Inc." Foot Locker. Retrieved on January 22, 2010.
  5. ^ Bain, Marc (August 18, 2017). "Foot Locker has a Nike problem". Quartz (publication). Retrieved August 18, 2017.
  6. ^ "The Evolution of Foot Locker Stores Over 40 Years". Sole Collector.
  7. ^ "Foot Locker loses race bias suit; African American says he was given".
  8. ^ Venator Group, Inc. Announces Name Change to Foot Locker, Inc., Retail Operations and Construction, November 2, 2001
  9. ^ "Foot Locker Profit Up".
  10. ^ Scardino, Emily. Foot Locker acquires Footaction Stores to step up growth, DSN Retailing Today, May 3, 2004
  11. ^ "Foot Locker to buy about 350 stores".
  13. ^ "School Pax Escola de Negócios". School Pax Escola de Negócios.
  14. ^ "Foot Locker School Rewards". Archived from the original on April 22, 2009.
  15. ^ a b Stacy Cowley (September 17, 2015). "Picking Up CCS Where Foot Locker Left Off". NYT.
  16. ^ 4-traders. "Foot Locker, Inc. : Completes Acquisition of Runners Point Group". 4-Traders. Retrieved August 12, 2013.
  17. ^ Brett Krasnove (May 9, 2014). "Fortune 500 - Fortune". Fortune.
  18. ^ "Foot Locker, Inc". Fortune.
  19. ^ Gonzalez-Rodriguez, Angela (March 9, 2015). "Foot Locker, a foot ahead market expectations". FashionUnited. Retrieved June 11, 2015.
  20. ^ Elven, Marjorie van (February 7, 2019). "Foot Locker invests 100 million US dollars in Goat Group". FashionUnited. Retrieved August 21, 2020.

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