Gordon Brothers Group has acquired Blast-Off Brands for an undisclosed amount.
Blast-Off is a Los Angeles-based licensing and branding company working primarily as a consultant to help companies improve their operations. Ramez Toubassy, a cofounding partner of Blast-Off, will join Gordon Brothers as president of its Brands Division. The rest of the Blast-Off Brands team, which includes licensing head Jaime Lewisohn Mann and creative director Ann Gordon, will take on senior leadership positions on both the creative and licensing sides of the business.
Prior to forming Blast-Off, Toubassy was at Brand Sense Partners for over a decade, a global branding and licensing agency, where for most of that time he was president and chief executive officer.
Gordon Brothers said the acquisition will serve as the foundation for its next generation of brand investment platform.
Kenneth Frieze, ceo of Gordon Brothers, said, “While Gordon Brothers has been very active in the brands space for years, we saw a unique opportunity in acquiring Blast-Off Brands to bring even deep brand building and licensing capabilities in house.”
Frieze said his firm’s brands division is comprised of three components: consulting services; equity investments in middle-market brands with investments into the eight figures, and debt investments where it partners with Gordon Brothers Finance Co., providing between $5 million to $50 million in financing against intangible assets, such as intellectual property, as the collateral.
Ramez said the plan for the business division is to expand its management consulting and equity investment know-how in the fashion and apparel sector. That would give Gordon Brothers a formidable presence in the brands space, and as it identifies acquisition opportunities, perhaps make it an even bigger player on the brand management front.
Frieze said the company was the first to work the brand management model, noting its investments in Polaroid and The Sharper Image.
Ramez plans to spend time shuttling between New York and Los Angeles, since that’s where much of the fashion opportunities are in North America. But noting Gordon Brothers’ offices globally, both Ramez and Frieze were quick to note opportunities that are present overseas as well.
“We see this as a truly global opportunity….We think there is as much opportunity outside the U.S. as there is inside the U.S.,” Ramez said.