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Iconix Brand acquires full ownership of Chinese JV
17
Mar '15
US based apparel marketer, Iconix Brand Group said it has acquired the remaining 50 per cent of Iconix China from its joint venture partner, Novel Fashion Brands Limited.

Novel Fashion Brands was owned by the Chou family and the deal was made for $56.4 million, of which $40.4 million was paid in cash and $16 million was paid in the Company's common stock.

Iconix China was formed in September 2008 and the operating model, different from the Iconix traditional licensing model has been to attract entrepreneurs and fast-growing local Chinese companies.

It provides them with an Iconix brand in which they invest through the build-out of stand-alone stores and shop-in-shops, and in return Iconix China receives an equity stake in the newly formed venture.

To date, the brands that Iconix China has placed successfully are Candie's and Marc Ecko Cut & Sew with Shanghai La Chapelle Fashion Co. Ltd and London Fog with China Outfitters.

Other deals are Material Girl with Ningbo Peacebird; Ed Hardy with Landmark International; Ecko Unltd with Xi Ha Clothing; Badgley Mischka with Eve NY; Joe Boxer with Northeast Socks; and Royal Velvet with Qingdao Hongfang.

The largest brand in the Iconix China joint venture is Candie's, which partnered with Shanghai La Chapelle in 2010, which has expanded to more than 700 stores and shop-in-shops by 2014.

The Company's business platform in China also includes its three global brands of Peanuts, Umbro and Lee Cooper which have been managed outside of the joint venture.

China has been one of the fastest growing territories for the Peanuts brand and now has over 2,000 points of distribution across China including 20 Charlie Brown Cafe's.

In 2014, the Company partnered with Global Brands Group to build out the Lee Cooper and Umbro brands in China, both of which have strong brand recognition in the region.

"Through Silas and Veronica Chou's expertise, Iconix China has successfully launched nine of our brands with more than 900 standalone stores and shop-in-shops," Neil Cole, CEO of Iconix said.

He added, "Now that our business has gained sufficient scale, we have decided to acquire management and control of the business, consistent with the next phase of our international growth strategy." (AR)

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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