Most companies would make a deal for the right price, especially amid the current troubled economy, and some firms are actively weighing their options.
Last month, cash-strapped NexCen Brands Inc. said it received "numerous expressions of interest" in its Bill Blass and Waverly brands. The firm has inked an agreement with its lender that will provide a bit of additional financial breathing room, at least until the middle of this month. In addition, NexCen has sliced its workforce by 10 percent, a move expected to cut cash outlays by about $3.5 million.
It's uncertain how this will all shake out. Designer Licensing Holdings Co. LLC, the jeanswear licensee for Bill Blass and owner of 10 percent of the Bill Blass trademark, has acknowledged interest in acquiring the mark. Others reported to have expressed interest include Tharanco Group, Iconix Brand Group Inc. and Windsong Brands LLC.
Lutz & Patmos, a designer knitwear label known for its collaboration with high-profile types like Carine Roitfeld and Julianne Moore, is also said to be seeking an investor or a potential buyer.
In addition, Brooklyn Industries, a nine-unit retail operation that has built a loyal following in its 10-year history is prime for the taking. Co-founder Lexy Funk has heard from potential buyers but said nothing is "imminent." She might seek a partnership down the road to raise capital, provided the brand maintains its indie spirit and creative design and marketing, she said.
"The next step for us is to build the company into a national brand within the next five years," Funk said.
To that end, the company has just opened its first non-New York store in Chicago's Buckhead neighborhood, which is where Funk lived when she attended the Art Institute of Chicago. Brooklyn Industries' e-commerce site has allowed the brand to reach shoppers in the U.K., Scandinavia and other places abroad.
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia