Footwear maker the Rockport Group officially celebrated its move to Newton on Jan. 12 with the opening of its stunning new global headquarters in West Newton.
The move comes nearly 18 months after the company became a standalone entity following its acquisition by Boston-based investment firm Berkshire Partners LLC and New Balance Holding, Inc., the investment arm of New Balance. The business was previously owned by the adidas Group and located in Canton, Mass.
“We are excited to call Newton the home of The Rockport Group’s new global headquarters,” said Rockport Group President & CEO, Bob Infantino, a Newton resident. “We were founded in Massachusetts in 1971 and are proud to continue our legacy in the greater Boston area. Our head office is a hub for our employees around the world across all three of our brands – Rockport, Aravon and Dunham – and our heritage and commitment to the art of shoemaking is reflected in our new space.”
Rockport’s new office is located in a brick-and-beam building at 1220 Washington St. in a space owned and managed by Davis Marcus Partners, a venture of The Davis Companies and Marcus Partners Inc. Inspired by the company’s New England heritage, the 70,000-square-foot layout was renovated by Boston-based architectural firm Baker Design Group to feature: industrial-themed staircases, exposed brick, large, bright windows, an open-concept cafeteria, and a main lounge area featuring a double-sided fireplace. Inviting common areas encourage collaboration and exude warmth. Classic yet modern, the new headquarters is home to approximately 215 employees.
“We are very glad to welcome The Rockport Group to Newton,” said Newton Mayor Setti Warren. “Our unique village centers, supportive community, and easy access to Boston create an environment where businesses can thrive. Rockport is an exciting addition to our vibrant and diverse business community and I’m excited to see how they continue to grow and succeed here.”
Newton-Needham Regional Chamber President Greg Reibman said it is gratifying that Rockport choose to locate it global headquarters and bring more than 200 employees to Newton and to welcome Rockport as a chamber member.
“We appreciate that Bob Infantino and his team recognized that Newton is a great place to do business,” Reibman said. “We also know that Rockport’s employees are going to love West Newton’s restaurants and other small businesses located just a short walk away from their new headquarters.”
Reibman credited Mayor Warren, City Councilor Ted Hess-Mahan and other municipal leaders for their efforts to bring Rockport to Newton. He also commended the architects, the Baker Design Group, and property owners The Davis Companies and Marcus Partners Inc for collaborating on the stunning, modern renovation.