Shares of The Jones Group Inc. rose 5.9 percent Friday on word that activist investor Barington Capital had taken a stake in the firm and was pushing for it to sell off some smaller brands and tighten up operations.
The stock closed up 78 cents to $14.07 and climbed as high as $15.07 in midday trading. More than 4.7 million shares traded hands Friday, well ahead of the three-month average 742,789 shares.
A company spokeswoman said, “The Jones Group confirms that Barington holds approximately 2 percent of our stock and that Jones has met with Barington at Barington’s request. We always consider and respect the views of our stockholders and do not comment on individual discussions with them.”
The spokeswoman added that the company remains committed to its mission of enhancing stockholder value “through creating the leading global fashion company defined by premier brands and driven by exceptional talent.”
Jones has a portfolio of 35 brands, but according to an investor presentation from March, it has just six “core brands” and six “emerging brands” with higher margin opportunities.
The core brands include Nine West, Jones New York, Anne Klein, Gloria Vanderbilt, L.E.I. and Easy Spirit. Collectively, they represent 62 percent of the company’s net revenues. The emerging brands are Stuart Weitzman, Kurt Geiger, Robert Rodriguez, Rachel Roy, Jessica Simpson and Brian Atwood.
Beyond those 12 businesses, Jones markets brands with somewhat less traction in the market, such as Robbi & Nikki, Bandolino, Enzo Angiolini, Le Suit, Mootsies Tootsies, Grane, Erika, Napier and Albert Nipon.
Although Jones’ stock saw a nice gain Friday, it has a market capitalization of just $1.03 billion — below that of competitors such as Fifth & Pacific Cos. Inc., at $2.56 billion; PVH Corp., at $8.88 billion, and Ralph Lauren Corp., at $15.79 billion.
A Barington spokesman said, “We’re not in the practice of commenting publicly on companies we’re engaged in private discussion with.”
The Wall Street Journal first reported Barington’s interest in the company on its Web site Friday.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews