NEW YORK — Outerwear company Andrew Marc has completed a recapitalization with financing from GB Palladin, the investment arm of Gordon Bros. Group. Terms were not disclosed.
“It is the right time in our business, and in the world at large, to work with a partner,’’ said Suzanne Schwartz, vice president at Andrew Marc. “Business is riskier these days and you have to expand in different directions….We’re basically one owner and we wanted to share the risk as we move into new categories.”
Andrew Marc does 60 percent of its business in leather and fur, and 40 percent in other fabrics such as nylon and wool. About 55 percent of the business is men’s wear, with 45 percent in women’s. That ratio may change as Andrew Marc expands into new categories.
Mark Schwartz, president of Gordon Bros. Group, who is not related to the owners of Andrew Marc, said, “We are making a major equity interest in the company. With our interests in consumer products companies across the board in manufacturing, wholesale and retail, our knowledge can help [company founder Andrew Schwartz] and Suzanne take Andrew Marc to the next level. They get all the benefits of having a strategic investor and still get to run the company as well as retain a large percentage ownership in their company.”
Mark Schwartz said the opportunity to invest in Andrew Marc is a good one for GB Palladin and met its investment criteria.
“Very few firms maintain the integrity of a brand for 24 years,” he said. “The company has a clean distribution, and great recognition throughout specialty and department stores. We heard they were interested in taking on a partner and there are a lot of opportunities on expanding the brand.”
Andrew and Suzanne Schwartz will run the firm on a day-to-day basis, while GB provides advice on strategies to expand product lines and extend geographically.
Unlike many other private equity investment companies, GB doesn’t have an exit plan for its investment. The financial firm tends to hold on to its holdings long-term, looking more for growth than some competitors that prefer flipping their stakes for a quicker return on their equity holdings. GB Palladin’s past investments include Restoration Hardware, Spencer Gifts and Laura Secord, Canada’s premier chocolate brand and retailer.“GB has good knowledge of retail and apparel, which is unique among financial firms, and they will get to work with a talented management team at Andrew Marc to expand the brand,” said Frederick Schmitt, an investment banker at Los Angeles-based The Sage Group, who represented the apparel firm.
Schmitt said he anticipates more apparel firms to connect with financial and strategic partners.
Suzanne Schwartz disclosed that the first product extension will be in accessories, with a focus on handbags, business cases and wallets. Andrew Marc is developing the plan for the accessories market. It doesn’t have any licensees now, but considers that an option for select products in the category.
She said that the firm’s price points for outerwear are between the mid-price range and luxury, and the addition of accessories could mean a new group of consumers.
Opening retail prices for Andrew Marc are $300 for a nylon jacket and as much as $2,000 for shearling. Wholesale prices are about 40 percent less. Prices at retail for the Marc New York collection start at $150 and run as high as $800, with wholesale 40 percent lower.
The company hasn’t determined what the prices will be for its accessories line, but is banking on the same distribution that the two brands now have. Andrew Marc is sold primarily at Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale’s and Neiman Marcus. Marc New York can be found in Marshall Field’s, Lord & Taylor, Macy’s and Nordstrom.
Accessories in the Andrew Marc collection is to launch in fall 2006, with Marc New York accessories a year or two later. The company expects to ramp up its staffing during spring 2005 to prepare for the fall launch. After accessories, sportswear is the next possibility on the agenda.
@margotrobbie steps out onto the red carpet wearing @miumiu. The actress is nominated for “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role” in “I, Tonya” at the #SagAwards. (📷: Stewart Cook) #wwdfashion
For @massimogiorgetti of @msgm, the Nineties are his favorite decade. “They had a huge impact on my personal growth. What I like of the Nineties is that they are not so precise in terms of style as other decades…there was actually a bit of everything,” he said. As seen on MSGM’s Spring 2018 show: tie-dye and a bit of grunge, two styles that are synonymous with the decade #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @kukukuba)
Breaking News: @hedislimane joins @celine as its new artistic, creative and image director. One of fashion’s preeminent image-makers and trendsetters, Slimane is to join the LVMH brand on Feb. 1 and unveil his first fashion proposition for men and women next September during Paris Fashion Week. It marks a major homecoming for Slimane, who cemented his reputation – and influenced men’s tailoring for more than a decade – as the designer of Dior Homme between 2000 and 2007. He went on to reinvent and ignite the house of Yves Saint Laurent, which he rechristened Saint Laurent, between 2012 and 2016 – all the while maintaining a close relationship with the Arnault family, which controls LVMH and Dior. Read the full exclusive story on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews #wwdfashion
“Personally I believe the Eighties have been the richest and more vivacious period for international fashion,” Giorgio Armani said when asked what his favorite decade of fashion is. It was a moment of disruption and experimentation and only thinking back to the first years of that decade is always an emotion for me, for what they have meant to me and my work.” The influence is clear in @giorgioarmani spring 2018 collection, pictured here, which was full of bright colors and unexpected prints. Read more about which decades designers loved most on WWD.com #wwdfashion #wwddecades (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
For Lady Gaga’s only Italian show on her “Joanne World Tour,” the singer wore a range of @versace_official outfits. The standout piece: this custom-made bodysuit inspired by the brand’s spring 2018 collection. #wwdfashion (RG: @ladygaga)
@_camillaruth_ is expanding on the wellness-craze concept with @westbourne – a new NYC restaurant that’s both a healthy-minded café as well as a business that gives back to the community. Marcus works with the Robin Hood foundation to give back to The Door, a non-profit providing youth development services, and also hires employees through The Door. Read our full interview with Marcus on giving back through food on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)