NYDJ Names Robert Skinner Jr. CEO

Edwin Lewis, who’s been chairman and ceo of the company since its acquisition by Falconhead, will leave after a brief transition period.

Crestview Partners has completed its acquisition of NYDJ Apparel LLC and installed apparel veteran Robert C. Skinner Jr. as the company’s president and chief executive officer.

This story first appeared in the January 7, 2014 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Crestview confirmed that Mackey McDonald, who’s been a senior adviser to Crestview since retiring as chairman and ceo of VF Corp. in 2008, would serve as NYDJ’s chairman. McDonald’s involvement in the venture was first reported by WWD on Dec. 16.

Crestview acquired the company in tandem with Maybrook Capital Partners from Falconhead Capital LLC and the founding Rudes-Sandel family. Financial terms weren’t disclosed, but market sources pegged the price at more than twice the $100 million reportedly paid by Falconhead in 2008.

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Edwin Lewis, who’s been chairman and ceo of NYDJ since its acquisition by Falconhead, will leave the company after a brief transition period. He has also sold his unspecified equity in the firm to the new owners.

Skinner, who began his career with Oxford Industries Inc., has been a director of NYDJ for four years. Beginning in 2009, he spent four years with Smart Shirts, most recently as ceo of Smart Apparel U.S. and managing director of Smart Shirts Hong Kong.

Prior to that, Skinner spent eight years with Kellwood Co., joining as president of men’s wear in 2000 and advancing to chairman, president and ceo of the company prior to its 2008 acquisition by Sun Capital Partners Inc. He served briefly as chairman and ceo of Lacoste USA before joining Smart.

Skinner, who will work out of NYDJ’s headquarters in Vernon, Calif., said, “In a relatively short period of time, NYDJ has created a passionate following with style-conscious women over 35 years of age in the slimming jean market. I am excited to be part of the NYDJ team and to capitalize on the numerous opportunities the brand has for continued growth.”

Citing his four years on NYDJ’s board, McDonald commented, “Bob knows the company well. He is a strong leader with exceptional experience in the apparel industry and a proven history of building brands.”

Reflecting on his five years at the helm of a firm that now generates about $200 million in revenues and has carved out a sizable niche with “Lift Tuck Technology” that provides post-teen women with a flattering profile, Lewis noted that, upon his arrival, the firm had a “very limited product range and was targeted to a much older demographic. I believed in the concept, but felt that the company would benefit from a move to NYDJ and a more elevated fashion aesthetic in both product and marketing.”

During his tenure, what had been Not Your Daughter’s Jeans became NYDJ, the firm added a variety of sportswear components to its assortment and marketing expanded to include a television campaign, launched last fall, featuring Helena Christensen.

Lewis had no comment on his plans for the future and his departure date hasn’t yet been set.