G-III Apparel Group is known for its expertise in manufacturing apparel for a number of brands, either company-owned or under license. It also has a private-label program for retailers such as J.C. Penney Co. Inc. and Kohl’s Corp. and has a growing business in handbags and small leather accessories.
Founded in 1956 by Aron Goldfarb as an outerwear firm, the company expanded to other apparel categories after Goldfarb’s son Morris joined the firm in 1972. Today, G-III’s reach in the apparel sector is extensive as a wholesaler and a retailer. The group has a portfolio of more than 40 licensed and proprietary brands include ready-to-wear for Calvin Klein, Ivanka Trump, Karl Lagerfeld and Vilebrequin; dresses for the Calvin Klein, Ellen Tracy, Ivanka Trump, Jessica Simpson and Vince Camuto brands; handbags and accessories for Andrew Marc, Calvin Klein, Karl Lagerfeld and Marc New York, and footwear for G.H. Bass & Co., Karl Lagerfeld and Marc New York-Andrew Marc.
In its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the company’s retail customers include Macy’s; The TJX Cos.; Ross Stores; Lord & Taylor; Dillard’s; The Bon-Ton Stores; Nordstrom; Saks Fifth Avenue, and J.C. Penney, as well as membership clubs Costco and Sam’s Club.
In its most recent fiscal year ended Jan. 31, the company operated 199 Wilsons Leather outlet stores and 163 G.H. Bass outlet stores, in addition to five Calvin Klein Performance stores, across 43 states and Puerto Rico.
G-III’s goal, according to the SEC filing, is to “continue to expand our position as an all-season diversified apparel company with a broad portfolio of brands that we offer in multiple channels of retail distribution.”
In the past year, shares of G-III have hit a high of $73 and a low of $36.14. On April 7, 2015, G-III was one of the few companies in the past few years to unveil a planned 2-for-1 stock split of its common shares. At the time, Morris Goldfarb, the company’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, said, “We are pleased to take this action as a result of our strong operating results and stock price performance.” He added that the stock split reflects the company’s “belief” in its long-term initiatives.
Highlights from G-III Apparel Group’s History
1956: Aron Goldfarb migrates to the U.S. and establishes G&N Sportswear, now known as G-III Apparel Group Ltd., as an outerwear company.
1972: Morris Goldfarb, current ceo and son of Aron, joins the company.
1981: Acquires Siena Leather Ltd., an aspirational luxury leather sportswear firm.
1989: G-III Apparel Group Ltd. incorporates in Delaware and becomes a publicly traded firm.
Nineties: Company starts the Colebrook & Co. label, which launches its textile outerwear collection. It begins partnering with national brands, such as Kenneth Cole and Jones New York, to produce branded outerwear under license. It also starts working with major sports organizations, such as the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball.
2005: The company acquires the Marvin Richards and Winlit outerwear brands. The Marvin Richards acquisition gives the company the licenses for men’s and women’s outerwear under the Calvin Klein brand name, which in turn gives G-III the ability to expand further in Calvin Klein women’s suits; dresses; performance wear, sportswear, handbags and cold weather accessories. G-III is now the second-largest licensee for the Calvin Klein brand. Its purchase of Winlit gives G-III the license for men’s and women’s outerwear for the Guess brand.
2007: G-III acquires the Jessica Howard and Eliza J. dress brands. That helps the firm prove its design and manufacturing capability to become a powerhouse in the dress market. It also expands its Ellen Tracy license to include women’s suits and dresses. G-III manufactures dresses under the Calvin Klein, Ellen Tracy, Jessica Simpson, Ivanka Trump and Vince Camuto brands.
2008: The company acquires Wilson’s Leather retail outlet chain. Learnings from the Wilson’s operation helps the firm expand its retail presence with Andrew Marc outlet stores and Calvin Klein Performance stores. The company also acquires Andrew Marc from the Gordon Brothers Group for $42 million.
2011: Kensie sportswear license is signed, a move that paves the way for expansion in the women’s sportswear category.
2012: G-III acquires luxury swimwear brand Vilebrequin for $106 million from private equity firm Fashion Fund IBV.
2013: Company acquires G.H. Bass & Co. from PVH Corp. in a $50 million cash transaction.
2015: The company enters into a joint venture agreement with Karl Lagerfeld Group BV, and acquires a 49 percent stake in KL North America BV.
2016: G-III takes a 19 percent stake in Karl Lagerfeld Group BV. It also expands its existing relationship with Tommy Hilfiger to include women’s wear collections in the U.S. and Canada. Enters agreement to acquire Donna Karan International.