NEW YORK -- Arnold Simon, president of Rio Sportswear, said the termination of talks with Oshkosh B'Gosh for the acquisition of his company will not affect Rio's plans to take over the CK Calvin Klein jeans business.

In an interview from Los Angeles Thursday, Simon said he was "relieved" the Oshkosh deal had fallen through. As reported, Oshkosh said Wednesday that the talks had ended, and an official acknowledged that "Calvin Klein was a discussion item."

"We canned Oshkosh because of their unwillingness to deal with Calvin Klein. They'd rather license Lassie," Simon asserted, referring to Oshkosh's new children's wear line featuring the canine character.

The lengthy negotiations -- Oshkosh served a letter of intent to acquire Rio last September -- wore out Simon's patience, he said.

"These guys [at Oshkosh] are in slow gear. They're in Wisconsin, they're in the kids' business," he said. "They're very nice people, but have you ever seen a deal take six months?"

Simon said he expects to complete the CK jeans deal, announced last month, "within the next 30 days or so."

"We're a $200 million company," he said. "There's no problem with money."

Officials at Calvin Klein Inc. could not be reached for comment on the Rio deal. Calvin Klein, vice chairman, and Barry Schwartz, chairman, were in Tokyo Thursday for the official announcement of the formation of Calvin Klein Japan Co.

To Read the Full Article
SUBSCRIBE NOW

Tap into our Global Network

Of Industry Leaders and Designers

load comments
blog comments powered by Disqus