OFF THE ROAD AGAIN: Wilsons The Leather Experts Inc. on Tuesday said it will liquidate its travel subsidiaries, sales of which declined 8.9 percent in the third quarter. Overall, the firm’s third-quarter loss widened to $17 million, or 84 cents a diluted share, on a 5.9 percent drop in sales to $132.6 million from a year ago. Same-store sales for the quarter dropped 7.2 percent, due mostly to reduced revenue from decreased mall traffic.
HILFIGER INKS KOREAN DEAL: Tommy Hilfiger USA Corp. has signed a long-term retail licensing agreement with SK Global Co. for distribution of Tommy Hilfiger products in South Korea. Starting with fall 2003, Hilfiger’s men’s sportswear line will be sold in department store concessions and freestanding stores, followed by women’s wear, jeans and children’s wear. “Korean consumers have demonstrated their desire for quality sportswear such as Tommy Hilfiger,” said Man Gyun Kim, executive director of SK Global’s fashion division. Lynn Shanahan, president of licensing at Hilfiger added: “This new marketing and distribution agreement is part of our commitment to further develop the global market strategy for the Tommy Hilfiger brand.”
TOP MARKS: Philip Green, the new owner of Arcadia — Topshop’s parent — has vowed to destroy $900 worth of garments destined for the store, following a report in London’s Evening Standard on Tuesday that they were made in a local sweatshop. The factory’s employees were paid about 68 cents less per hour than the U.K.’s minimum wage of $5.92, the paper said. (Figures are converted from British pounds at current exchange rates.) East London’s Whitechapel district is a reputed home to dozens of sweatshops. “The supplier we hired sub-contracted the order to this factory. Therefore, we will cease to do business with them,” Green said.
This story first appeared in the November 20, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.