MILAN — Vilebrequin, the French brand famous for its colorful swimwear pieces infused with a playful touch, is gearing up to expand its offering by launching a denim line.The French company has inked a multiyear licensing agreement with Italy’s Giada SpA for the production and distribution of the denim collection in Europe, North America, the Middle East, Japan and Korea. The first collection for men and women is to debut at retail in spring 2019.The Vilebrequin denim line will include pants and jackets, distributed through department stores and positioned in the premium segment.“For some time now, we have contemplated adding denim as we expand our brand into additional lifestyle product categories,” said Roland Herlory, Vilebrequin’s chief executive officer, adding that “we are excited to be partnering with Giada SpA, a leading producer of 100 percent made in Italy luxury denim, as we share high standards for quality and craftsmanship.”The executive stressed the importance of such a deal, highlighting “this partnership is a perfect fit to further enhance our brand’s global distribution." In 2017 the brand also introduced its first sunglass line through a licensing deal with Australian manufacturer Sunshades Eyewear.“This Vilebrequin denim collection commands the brand cachet to facilitate extensive international distribution and is expected to be well received by the market,” said Franco Catania, the Italian manufacturer’s ceo.Founded in 1987, Giada SpA is based in Rovigo, in the Veneto region. It produces and distributes under license the Jacob Cohën and Karl Lagerfeld Denim lines, counting around 300 employees. It recently opened a North American subsidiary with a view to expand in the U.S. market.In 2012 the Vilebrequin brand was acquired by G-III Apparel Group Ltd. from Netherlands-based private equity fund Fashion Fund I BV for a total purchase price of 85.5 million euros.
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