ASHFORD ASSETS TO DIAMOND: GSI Commerce last week said it would sell certain assets of Ashford.com, including its trademark, to jewelry Web site Diamond.com. Under the deal, expected to be completed Dec. 27, GSI will receive a nonrefundable deposit of...
ASHFORD ASSETS TO DIAMOND: GSI Commerce last week said it would sell certain assets of Ashford.com, including its trademark, to jewelry Web site Diamond.com. Under the deal, expected to be completed Dec. 27, GSI will receive a nonrefundable deposit of $500,000 as well as secured promissory notes, shares and warrants to purchase Diamond.com stock and 10 percent of Diamond.com’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization to a maximum of $2 million for the next five years. GSI, which purchased Ashford.com in late 2001 also said it would sell the firm’s remaining inventory, close its Houston facility, and phase out its corporate gift business. Michael G. Rubin, GSI’s chairman and chief executive officer, said Ashford has "performed below our expectations" and has caused "incremental losses" in 2002. Founded in 1998, Ashford sold upscale accessories and luxury goods, but never managed to achieve profitability.
JEAN SCENE: Levi Strauss plans to reorganize its distribution in Europe. The San Francisco denim giant on Friday said it intends to shutter distribution centers in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, and transfer distribution previously handled by those facilities to a third party that will be in Antwerp, Belgium. Levi’s said no final agreements have been reached, but if the proposal goes forward, about 75 people could lose their jobs.
JUDGE HALTS WAL-MART SALE: A Puerto Rican judge temporarily blocked Wal-Mart’s acquisition of a local supermarket chain there, saying it had antitrust implications. Superior Court Judge Milagros Rivera Guadarrama issued a decision responding to a government motion filed Friday claiming Wal-Mart’s purchase of Supermercados Amigo’s 35 supermarkets with 4,500 employees violated the island’s antitrust laws. "The court has determined that the plaintiff, the state, has demonstrated the Amigo’s acquisition by Wal-Mart could have the affect of substantially reducing competition or could create a monopoly," Guadarrama wrote in her decision, which prohibits Amigo from transferring its holdings to Wal-Mart until the matter is resolved in the courts. In other news, Wal-Mart said it plans to file a $10 billion debt shelf registration before the end of the year. The retailer said in offering the debt, its goal is to keep its debt-to-capitalization ratio at about 40 percent. As of Oct. 31, the end of third quarter, that ratio was 41.3 percent.
CLAIBORNE ELECTION: Liz Claiborne Inc. has elected Oliver R. Sockwell to its board. Sockwell, 59, is an executive-in-residence at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business. He is the co-founder, retired president and chief executive officer of the Construction Loan Insurance Corp. This addition brings Claiborne’s board to 10. His initial term as director will expire at the 2005 annual meeting of stockholders. Meanwhile, Paul Charron, Claiborne chairman and ceo, will speak about taking a disciplined business approach to the fashion industry tonight at The Learning Annex.
Supermodel @helenachristensen teamed up with longtime friend and designer @camillastaerk on a joint @paredeyewear collaboration. The lineup features three styles and 11 offerings, all of which embody a vintage feel. Get all the details on how they celebrated the collab on WWD.com. #wwdaccessories #wwdeye (📷: @slovekinpics)
“It’s a hard industry to keep motivated, as well, so finding different subjects and people is what makes it worth it – when you’re like, oh, I’ve met great people, I feel like I’ve done something good, and I feel proud of having done this,” said French actress Stacy Martin on being grateful for the variety of roles she’s take on. Read @ktauer’s full interview with Martin on her her latest film “Godard Mon Amour.” #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
After showing in front of the Eiffel Tower for his last two women’s ready-to-wear collection, it looks like @anthonyvaccarello may be heading to the Big Apple. Sources say the designer will stage his next @ysl show in NYC on June 6. Get all the details on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
EXCLUSIVE: Two and half months after John Targon, cofounder and codesigner of Baja East, was hired as creative director of the contemporary division at Marc Jacobs, he has left the company, WWD has learned. Marc Jacobs International, which is owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, confirmed Targon’s departure in a statement: “John Targon is a talented designer and we appreciate the work he has done here. Ultimately working together did not make sense for the brand and we wish him the best.” Read the story by @jessiredale, link in bio. #wwdnews
@theluxurycollection is officially launching a collection, tapping Sofia Sanchez de Betak for the capsule. Over 30 styles will be featured in the Chufy x The Luxury Collection, debuting next month at Bergdorf Goodman, The Webster, FiveStory and more. De Betak, known as “@chufy,” drew inspiration for the collection from her trips to Japan in the past year #wwdfashion
@lhd, founder and CEO of @thewebster, has teamed up with @lebonmarcherivegauche for the European launch of her ready-to-wear line, LHD. The launch will come with an exclusive pop-up opening today that’s set to run through May 20. Located on the second floor, it carries her debut Miami-themed resort collection, launched in November as see-now-buy-now. #wwdfashion