What does clothing company Kellwood know that no one else does? That seems to be the question that's brewing these days since, while most retail investors are strugling to juggle their lines, Kellwood is quietly shopping for more. The corporate owner of dried up fashion labels such as Sag Harbor and Phat Farm (Bye, Kimora!) has been trying to acquire a handful of higher-priced contemporary fashion brands with potential, according to the New York Post.
Backed by private-equity giant Sun Capital, Kellwood CEO Mike Kramer, a former top executive at Apple and Abercrombie & Fitch, is snatching up brands whose selling prices have been hit with steep discounts in the recent economy, sources said. Kramer's buying binge is being funded by Sun Capital head Marc Leder, who is reportedl looking for fresh places to invest more than $3 billion in investor cash.
Already Kramer has made a deal ADAM, from New York designer (and beloved by SCS!) Adam Lippes, who operates a boutique in Manhattan's Meatpacking District. While that deal may be announced today, sources said others are in the works. Kramer is also in "advanced talks" to take over Rebecca Taylor, which is sold at Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's. And in addition to acquisitions, Kramer is also looking to build up some labels he already has, namely Vince. "This is all about growing into that space that's between the middle market and luxury," a source noted.
With this recent movement, Kellwood has become head to head with fellow corporate owner Jones Apparel, which owns notable labels like Rachel Roy, Robert Rodriguez and Stuart Weitzman. So who will end up winning this battle of the brands? We'll just have to wait and see!
Article Source: The New York Post
Photo Source: news.mango.com
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Tags: acquiring, adam, Adam Lippes, Alia Rajput, Bloomingdale's, Brands, cash, contemporary, corporate, fashion, investor, Jones Apparel, Kellwood, labels, luxury, Marc Leder, middle market, Mike Kramer, New York Post, Nordstrom, owner, Phat Farm, Rachel Roy, Rebecca Taylor, Robert Rodriguez, Sag Harbor, Saks Fifth Avenue, Stuart Weitzman, Sun Capital, Vince