Adidas hires three all-star Nike footwear designers, will open 'Brooklyn Creative Studio'

Adidas has hired away three prominent Nike footwear designers as part of its plan to open a "Brooklyn Creative Studio" in New York City, the company announced Wednesday.

The studio, expected to open in 2015, "will drive design direction for the brand and elevate the company's direct interaction with consumers," says a statement issued by Adidas America, the North American regional headquarters located in Portland.

The three designers Adidas hired away from Nike include:

Denis Dekovic has 20 years of footwear design experience across soccer, women's footwear, snowboarding, basketball and tennis. Sneaker blogs credit Dekovic, Nike's global football design director, with developing the Mercurial 9, the Tiempo 5 and the Hypervenom soccer shoes as well as the Magista, the head-turning, Flyknit-upper soccer shoe developed in time for this year's World Cup in Brazil.

Marc Dolce is a 20-year veteran of the footwear-design industry with experience across basketball, training, running, women's footwear and lifestyle. Dolce's name is familiar to sneakerheads and sneaker blogs. Among other projects, last year he designed the Lunar Force 1, a limited edition of the Air Force 1. A Forbes profile noted that he lived in Oregon but valued his time on return trips to New York City. "The streets here talk to me when I walk," Dolce told Forbes. "Maybe it's just because this is my hometown, but I feel like I can hear it."

Mark Miner, also a frequent subject in sneaker blogs, is a footwear designer with experience in running, women's footwear and basketball. Among other projects, he is credited with key design contributions to the popular Nike Free Run+, making that shoe more flexible.

"The global studio will serve as a cultural contact point in the most influential city in the U.S., connecting the brand closely with sports and street culture," the company's statement says.

"The Brooklyn Creative Studio will be a small but essential operation aimed at exploring design direction for the brand. This facility will be an open source creative center allowing us to connect and collaborate with consumers in a way we've never done before," said Paul Gaudio, Adidas global creative director.

Maria Culp, a spokeswoman for Adidas America, said the opening of an Adidas studio in Brooklyn, N.Y., would not diminish the importance of design functions in Portland.

"The new Creative Studio in Brooklyn will explore creative direction and design language for the brand," Culp said in a statement.

"The Brooklyn studio will be a great addition to the already talented creative team members we have in Portland, Germany and across the brand," she said. "It will be a key collaboration center that all of our creation teams will have access to.  The Portland creation center remains the home of Paul Gaudio (global creative director), global basketball design and design teams across football, baseball, running, training and lifestyle."

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