Payless ShoeSource is an American discount footwear retailer founded in Topeka, Kansas in 1956 by brothers Louis and Shaol Pozez that is owned by Collective Brands, Inc. In 1961, it became a public company as the Volume Shoe Corporation which merged with the May Department Stores Company in 1979. In the 1980s, Payless was widely known in the U.S. for its Pro Wings line of discount sneakers, which often had Velcro straps instead of laces. In 1996, Payless ShoeSource became an independent publicly held company. In 2004, Payless ShoeSource announced it would exit the Parade chain and would close 100 Payless Shoe outlets. On August 17, 2007, the company acquired the Stride Rite Corporation and changed its name to Collective Brands, Inc. Collective Brands is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol PSS. The company had a total revenue for 2011 of US$3.4 billion. It was announced on May 1, 2012 that the company would be purchased by Wolverine World Wide, Blum Capital and Golden Gate Capital for US$1.32 billion.
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