MILAN — Rossignol Group is looking to expand its knitwear category with the acquisition of Dale of Norway.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Rossignol, the leading winter sports group, is owned by Stockholm-based private equity company Altor, focused on investing in and developing medium-sized companies with a Nordic origin.
Founded in 1879 and headquartered in Dalekvam, Norway, Dale is known for its high-quality wool-based knitwear and accessories, and is available in more than 25 countries around the world. The company, with a business of 13 million euros, has been the exclusive supplier of official knitwear to the Norwegian National Ski and Winter Olympic Teams since 1956. Over the past few years, it has developed contemporary collections for sport, outdoor and fashion.
“Rossignol and Dale of Norway share a profound respect for the value of heritage when it is combined with new technology and creative development,” said Bruno Cercley, chief executive officer of Rossignol Group, which has a history spanning 110 years. Emphasizing a shared vision “of bringing historic traditions into new and modern fashion,” Cercley said knitwear was “an integral part” of Rossignol’s apparel, seeing the addition of Dale as “highly complementary.”
Cercley continued: “I am impressed with what the management team and the rest of the Dale organization have built, and I look forward to expanding our common apparel business through shared know-how, new product development and global distribution. We see great potential in supporting and strengthening Dale in its international expansion, leveraging on both companies’ strong connection with winter resorts and retailers across the world, offering to our customers and consumers a complementary portfolio of apparel and equipment. In addition, Dale’s facilities in Dalekvam and manufacturing expertise can continue to drive Rossignol’s and Dale’s growing knitwear lines.”
“After having worked intensely with the turnaround, modernization and expansion of Dale of Norway for several years, creating a profitable company with substantial growth, I am proud to deliver the reins to Altor and Rossignol,” said Hilde Midthjell, ceo and owner of Dale of Norway. “Rossignol matches the brand, heritage and production focus at Dale and is in my view the ideal partner for Dale going forward, which has been a deciding factor for me when choosing Altor and Rossignol as the new owner. Rossignol is committed to the same values as we at Dale and will continue manufacturing world-leading knitwear at Dale and plans to expand the production with their own knitwear under the Rossignol brand. We also share a common view of strengthening our mutual ties with retailers and winter resorts across the world.”
Rossignol Group has been expanding into apparel, creating a subsidiary called Rossignol Apparel at the end of 2015 and launching a first collection during Milano Moda Uomo in January 2016, combining Rossignol’s sport performance heritage with a sophisticated and yet functional view on urbanwear.
Rossignol Apparel tapped Italian designer Andrea Pompilio to design a capsule collection under the Studio line for fall 2018. The line, comprising 30 styles for men and women, will bow at Pitti Uomo and Milan Men’s Fashion Week in January.
Alessandro Locatelli, ceo of Rossignol Apparel, told WWD in June that Pompilio was selected “for his modern vision of urban style — elegant, refined and functional.”
Studio flanks the Skiwear performance collection and the Sport Chic resort lifestyle collection.
Rossignol has also inked special collaborations with Tommy Hilfiger on a ski capsule and with Italia Independent on an eyewear collection, for example.