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Brand Matter Signs New Caribbean Joe Licensee

Ivory International to make Caribbean Joe brand's moderate-priced women's and children's apparel.

Brand Matter LLC, owner of the Caribbean Joe brand, has licensed Ivory International Inc. to manufacture and market Caribbean Joe moderate-priced women’s and children’s apparel, including knits, wovens, sweaters, casual bottoms and outerwear.

A new wholly owned division of Ivory will operate under the name Caribbean Joe Apparel Co. and will be based in both New York and Miami, where Ivory has headquarters. Ivory plans to hire the core design, merchandise and sales team from the former licensee, CJ Apparel Group, and will work with department and specialty stores on all current and future business.

Caribbean Joe president Andrea Scoli and vice president of merchandise Ellen Levy-Ganz will continue in their positions at the new Ivory division. Marketing Management Group helped facilitate the transaction.

Caribbean Joe does in excess of $200 million in wholesale business in women’s, men’s and children’s apparel and licensed products, according to Rick Platt, president of Brand Matter. Women’s and children’s apparel accounts for $80 million of that. Last month, Brand Matter signed a deal with Fencepost Productions LLC in Kansas City to manufacture and distribute men’s sportswear under the Caribbean Joe brand, which also had been licensed to CJ Apparel Group.

Caribbean Joe apparel and accessories are marketed under trademarks such as Caribbean Joe (sold at Dillard’s, Bon Ton, Belk, Macy’s, Bealls and Boscovs); Havana Jack’s Cafe (Kohl’s), La Cabana (QVC), Jamaica Bay (J.C. Penney) and CJ Breeze (Sears). Products include women’s, men’s and children’s sportswear, women’s and men’s swimwear and sunglasses, and women’s fragrances, luggage, footwear, loungewear, intimate apparel, headwear and handbags.

Brand Matter and CJ Apparel Group are affiliated companies owned by an investment group led by Windsong Brands LLC and Hilco Consumer Capital. The investment group intends to wind down its Fashionology Group operating division, which includes CJ Apparel Group and Ellen Tracy Ltd., and remain in business purely as a licensing and brand management firm, via Brand Matter’s Caribbean Joe and Ellen Tracy intellectual properties.