G-III GETS BET BRAND: G-III Apparel Group and BET Holdings have formed a joint venture to produce a BET brand apparel and accessories line aimed at African-American and urban shoppers. The apparel will consist of outerwear and sportswear.
The line is expected to be in select national stores for fall, with a full-scale rollout in 1998.
“Fashion trends are set in urban markets, and BET’s brand in the entertainment industry is a part of that mix,” said Robert L. Johnson, chairman and chief executive officer of BET. “We can deliver an inside access to this market while using BET’s media properties to cross-promote the product.”
BET Holding’s core business is Black Entertainment Television, a cable network that offers music video shows and syndicated programs to 47 million households.
“We believe the potential to be absolutely phenomenal,” said Morris Goldfarb, chairman and ceo of G-III, although he declined to project sales. “There isn’t any product area we won’t contemplate or eventually enter.”
G-III makes and markets outerwear and sportswear under the G-III, JL Colebrook, Siena, Kenneth Cole, National Football League, National Hockey League and NASCAR labels.
SEVENTH ON SCHOOLS: The Fashion Center Business Improvement District launched a program Monday to distribute fabric remnants and design materials at New York schools to encourage students to consider careers in fashion.
Some 20 first-graders at P.S. 321 in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn presented Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani with a framed collection of swatches they had designed using leftovers from Tommy Hilfiger, Todd Oldham and Nicole Miller. The fashion industry here produces 80 million pounds of surplus annually, said Barbara Randall, executive director of the FCBID.
“Arts programs unfortunately have broadly been ignored in the schools, and I think they are enormously important,” Giuliani said while at the school. “When young people can learn to draw and can learn to make things of interest and beauty, it really opens their minds to a whole area of experience that can uplift them and make their lives successful.”