US apparel giant VF Corporation is preparing to open an office in Denver that will serve as its Global Innovation Center.
The site in Denver’s River North Art District (RiNo) will be located close to the company’s new global headquarters on Wewatta Street in Denver’s Lower Downtown (LoDo) district, which is due to open in early 2020.
The company, which owns brands including Vans and Timberland, in August 2018 announced that it would move its headquarters to Denver from Greensboro in North Carolina. The plans coincided with the spin off its jeanswear business – which includes the Wrangler and Lee brands – into a separate company called Kontoor Brands.
The relocated Global Innovation Center will be used for product testing and innovation, quality assurance, customer showrooms and a photo studio for the six Denver-based brands, including The North Face, JanSport, Smartwool, Altra and Eagle Creek.
“The Denver Lab will be a valuable and vibrant hub for our innovation initiatives and for interacting with our retail partners,” says Craig Hodges, VF’s vice president of corporate affairs and communications.
With an estimated capacity of 1,200 people, VF’s new global headquarters provides the company with space to expand its future workforce beyond the 800 jobs it expects to employ in Denver over the next eight years. The Denver Lab facility will employ around 50 people and will be operational in autumn 2020.