SUN CAPITAL'S SUNNY OUTLOOK: Sun Capital Securities Group LLC's takeover of Kellwood Co. is all but complete. The private equity firm's $21-a-share cash tender offer for the $1.6 billion vendor didn't expire until midnight Tuesday, but as of 5 p.m. Monday, Sun Capital said 10,118,845 Kellwood shares had already been offered up. Combined with Sun Capital's existing 11.4 percent stake, the shares represent 57 percent of Kellwood's outstanding stock — more than the necessary majority to close the deal. If those shares weren't withdrawn Tuesday, Sun Capital said it would be able to pay for all tendered stock within days, while shares not offered up by midnight won't be paid until the deal is closed, which could take months.
MICHAEL PHELPS — Six Four AND 3-D: "It feels like a space suit," said Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps describing Speedo's new FS LZR Racer at a press conference Tuesday feting the elite suit. Hundreds of journalists; seven Olympic swimmers (Phelps, plus Natalie Coughlin, Dara Torres, Katie Ziegler, Katie Hoff, Ryan Lochte and Amanda Beard), all wearing the suit, and executives including Warnaco chief executive officer Joseph Gromek, filled E Space at 42nd Street and 11th Avenue in Manhattan to see a hologram presentation of the suit (a collaboration with Comme des Garçons) that athletes will wear at the Beijing Olympics in August. There were also events Tuesday in London, Tokyo and Sydney — plus the Manhattan one was Webcast. TOMMY'S CAREFREE CONFIDENCE: To promote its spring collection, Tommy Hilfiger is launching a global ad campaign that it's calling "Carefree Confidence." Looking to the same Sixties golden-era glamour that inspired the sportswear, the campaign depicts a couple driving vintage sports cars on the speedway in Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats.
This latest installment of National Geographic-inspired advertising, photographed by Dewey Nicks, follows campaigns from the past three seasons that have paid tribute to the Yukon Territory, Monument Valley and Olympic National Park.
But unlike past campaigns that featured a group of friends, this focuses on a couple. "The images of this campaign juxtapose the enormity of the salt flats' emptiness with the intimacy of the couple's companionship," Tommy Hilfiger said.The campaign will break in March issues of Vogue, Vanity Fair, W, GQ, Esquire, Elle and Details, in addition to outdoor campaigns in New York, Milan, London and Brussels. The company declined to reveal its spring ad budget.
LULULEMON HEARTS NEW YORK: Lululemon Athletica Inc. has big plans for New York, with two stores slated to open this year. The yogawear firm, which has been rapidly expanding since going public last summer, has had a 2,500-square-foot store in Lincoln Center for more than a year. The new stores will be about 3,000 square feet each. In late spring, the first will open on the Upper East Side, at 66th Street and Third Avenue, and in early fall, Union Square, where Lululemon had a showroom for a few months at the end of last year. That showroom — which had to close due to foot traffic exceeding expectations (and agreements with the landlord) — bodes well for the Canadian brand's acceptance in Manhattan. Next up? "We would love to have a store in SoHo," a spokeswoman said.
The company has hired a new vice president of real estate operations, Angelia H. Powell, as it adds 30 stores this year. Powell previously was director of real estate at New York & Co. She will report to Christine Day, executive vice president of retail operations. Powell replaces Larry Gore, who will be moving into merchandise, planning and allocations as senior vice president.
SHOSHANNA CELEBRATES 10TH ANNIVERSARY: Shoshanna Lonstein Gruss seems entirely too young to be celebrating a decade at the helm of her line. But a year after graduating from UCLA (where she'd worked at the West Coast retailer Tracey Ross and "realized it was possible for small lines to make it"), the Manhattan native did in fact launch three dresses in three shapes and three colors, giving birth to Shoshanna in 1998. "I started right out of college, and I wasn't scared to fail," she said. "I figured if it didn't work, I'd be 23."
In the last 10 years, Shoshanna's distribution has gone from 10 boutiques to 500 doors, including Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale's. Along the way, Lonstein Gruss added swim in 2001 — which makes up more than a third of sales — and Shoshanna BabyGirl in 2005, after becoming a mother. The swimsuits also have added more covering options, like one-pieces."The line was born from my frustration with fashion, because all the dresses then were bias-cut slipdresses where you couldn't wear a bra, and that didn't fit me," the designer said. "When I started the line, I needed more going-out outfits. Now I need more work outfits and things that are appropriate for taking my daughter to school. Luckily, my core customers have grown up with me."
From 1999 to 2005, Shoshanna was in a 50-50 partnership with lingerie company Lady Ester, and since Lady Ester went bankrupt and Shoshanna went out on its own, the company has doubled revenues to $12 million, Lonstein Gruss said. Dresses wholesale from $150 to $220, and swim ranges from $60 to $80 per suit. Shoshanna plans to fete its anniversary with several collaborations, to be finalized and unveiled this year.
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)
@Pharrell and his wife Helen Lasichanh were among the stars that came out to celebrate @rimowa’s first pop-up concept shop. The space, which is located on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, draws inspiration from airport luggage carousels and lounge areas – and features the company’s luggage and accessories. If the pop-up is successful it could pave the way for addition temporary shops throughout the world. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA)
@carineroitfeld celebrated @crfashionbook’s first calendar last night with a dinner party at Spring Place in Manhattan. Photographed by @stevenkleinstudio, the calendar takes on a fitness theme and features @joansmalls, @gigihadid, @danielle_herrington_ – pictured here – and more. “[Carine Roitfeld] wanted me to feel sexy and she wanted me to be myself and feel it out on my own and do what I felt was right,” said Herrington, aka Miss October. #wwdeye
@saintrecords and @virgilabloh last night at @americanexpress’ “A Night With Success Makers” event. “I always bring it back to community because without that I wouldn’t have the courage,” said Knowles when asked how she has gotten where she is now. Read more highlights from their conversation on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lizdoupnik)
This Just In: Industry sources have told WWD that Anastasia Soare is rumored to be considering selling her beauty business, @anastasiabeverlyhills. According to those sources, Soare has tapped investment bank Imperial Capital to explore sale options for her eponymous beauty brand –– and with at least $340 million in net sales, this would be a big deal. Put in context of other recent transactions for makeup companies, Soare’s price tag could be in the billions if she were to sell the whole thing. #wwdnews #wwdbeauty (📷: @clint_spaulding)
@assouline’s latest book, “The Spirit of Bentley: Be Extraordinary” captures the adventurous attitudes and opulent lifestyles of @bentleymotors’ most creative owners and enthusiasts throughout the U.K. The 292-page hardcover has a section dedicated to showing its team of skilled artisans and photos of its most colorful owners, from George Bamford to designer @alicetemperley, pictured here by Aline Coquelle. #wwdeye
@google released its report on the most popular search terms this year. For fashion brands, the list was led by @gucci, the luxury brand that stunned the market last October when it pledged to stop using fur. Runner ups were @supremenewyork and @fashionnova, along with more established brands like @louisvuitton, @chanelofficial and @ysl. #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
In yet another fashion show shuffle, @elleryland is moving its show in sync with the Paris couture calendar — though the brand is still keeping one foot on the city’s ready-to-wear schedule. Their runway show in January will coincide with the launch of a new strategy: designing two main collections each year instead of four, which will then be released in four drops. “As we all know, the system needs to change. We need to show sooner to give time back to artisans and designers to do what they do best — create,” said founder Kym Ellery. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
@maxmara’s classic 101801 coat was the cornerstone of its pre-fall 2018 collection. The design team expanded the traditional double-breasted, kimono-sleeved style into a trapeze coat, lean belted styles and a peacoat and presented them in monochromatic looks – like the camel one pictured here. #wwdfashion #prefall18 (📷: George Chinsee)