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Adidas’ Nic Galway on Building Successful Collaborations

Before joining Adidas, where he’s worked for almost two decades, Nic Galway, the global senior vice president of design for Adidas Originals and Style, studied automotive design. He parlayed that into a job at Adidas, where he helped facilitate collaborations before they were called collaborations — specifically the launch of the Y-3 line with Yohji Yamamoto.
He still works with Yamamoto, but is juggling many more projects, including the successful partnership on the Yeezy line with Kanye West, who he said has pushed him and the team at Adidas to move beyond their comfort zones. Galway sat down with WWD’s style director Alex Badia to talk about merging Adidas’ heritage with the future, the future of men’s wear, and what makes a strong collaboration.
WWD: I’ve seen that car design and shoe design are related. Do you think that’s the case?
Nic Galway: I studied back in the mid-Nineties. And when I joined Adidas, there was no one in the company at all who studied shoe design and sneaker design wasn’t something you could study at all. There are a lot of people who are into automotive who really thought they wanted to study this, but when they got into the world it

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