LONDON — Stylus Media Group, which provides business intelligence to consumer lifestyle, consumer product and consumer engagement companies, will today reveal its acquisition of Decoded Fashion, the New York-based firm that creates events that aim to connect emerging technologies with decision-makers in the fashion, beauty and retail sectors.
This story first appeared in the March 31, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Decoded Fashion’s founder Liz Bacelar will continue to lead the company, taking the title of founder and president, with Stylus Media Group’s founder, chairman and chief executive officer Marc Worth taking on the ceo role at Decoded Fashion. Decoded will continue to be based in New York, with a smaller office in London.
“Decoded Fashion has a well-earned credibility amongst the fashion industry for staging events that matter,” Worth said. “Stylus Group is expected to be an all-seeing source of consumer behavior, design trends, innovation breakthroughs and business understanding,” he said. “The synergy between these two companies is clear.”
Before starting Stylus in 2010, Worth founded the trend forecasting service WGSN, which he sold to EMAP — now known as Top Right Group — for 150 million pounds, or $250 million, in 2005. In 2012, Hearst took a 20 percent stake in Stylus Media Group.
The companies said that following the acquisition, Decoded Fashion will accelerate the expansion of its event series in the U.S., Europe, Asia and South America. Recent events that Decoded Fashion has organized include last year’s Fashion Hackathon in New York, a competition to create a B2B fashion app, which carried a $10,000 prize, and Decoded Fashion Milan, a forum that took place in October. The Milan event featured speakers including Vogue Italia’s editor in chief Franca Sozzani, along with executives from Salvatore Ferragamo and Ermenegildo Zegna.
Next up, Bacelar will host a Decoded Fashion London conference on May 13, which will follow a Fashion Hackathon contest in the city on May 10 and 11. Decoded will team with the British Fashion Council to present the five best tech ideas that have emerged from the Hackathon event at the Decoded Fashion conference. “The message is, ‘Does the tech make sense to the fashion industry?’” said Bacelar of the judging criteria. “The tech [created] needs to woo the industry. It’s not just about cool tech.” Bacelar also has Decoded beauty events planned for Paris and South Korea in 2015. In addition, Decoded Fashion will help Stylus build on its own fashion industry event offering.