Strategic partnership
Helle Graabæk
Helle Graabæk, Course Coordinator, Textile Design; Michael Frederiksen, Instructor

Collaboration with ECCO

In collaboration with ECCO Sko A/S we have launched an educational programme in footwear design with the potential to attract students from around the world. With 20 million pairs of shoes sold every year, ECCO brings in-depth knowledge of footwear to the collaboration, while the students at Design School Kolding challenge and inspire the company in terms of innovation and design.

The collaboration agreement gives us a unique framework for letting students work with footwear. Thanks to ECCO we are able to ensure an ambitious talent development of a new generation of footwear designers – a development that also benefits ECCO in the form of brand new perspectives on product development.

Innovation at the centre

The collaboration agreement between the school and ECCO gives the students a unique framework withn which they can explore their talent and also gain valuable insight into the shoe industry – as early as during their bachelor's degree programme.

– Innovation is a core value at ECCO, and we look forward to a rewarding partnership in both design and innovation, which will include everything from new potential materials to design and construction. At the same time, the collaboration offers ECCO access to the most talented designers of tomorrow, says Jakob Møller Hansen, ECCO’s Vice President for R & D and Design.

As part of the collaboration agreement Design School Kolding has established a shoe and last workshop to manufacture prototypes. The school has also appointed an adjunct professor, ECCO’s lead designer Ejnar Truelsen, to teach the subject, and finally the partnership will offer brand new opportunities for the most talented students to apply for working grants and internships.

The content of the collaboration agreement:

  • Opportunity for design students to draw on ECCO's knowledge about the footwear industry, both from the craft and from the business aspect
  • Access to ECCO's workshop facilities in Tønder and Bredebro
  • Feedback from ECCO on the students’ projects
  • Establishment of an education scholarship for particularly promising footwear design students
  • Opportunity for the students to exhibit their work, both through Design School Kolding's participation in international events and at ECCO's global travelling exhibitions

About ECCO

ECCO Sko A/S was founded in 1963 and is one of the world's leading manufacturers of quality footwear. The company's success is based on quality and innovation, combining style and comfort in a simple Scandinavian design. As one of only a few companies in the industry ECCO owns the entire value chain from tanneries to shops. ECCO's products are sold in 87 countries from 2,989 ECCO shops and shop-in-shops and from a total of 15,000 sales outlets worldwide. ECCO is family owned and has 18,500 employees. Read more at



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