AUGUSTUS IN MAJOR DRIVE TO UPDATE LOOK
Byline: Arthur Friedman
NEW YORK — Augustus Clothiers is out to punch up its image with a new marketing campaign and a new designer to execute its updated look.
To facilitate smoother, more efficient deliveries, the company also opened a new 50,000-square-foot distribution center.
The ready-to-wear and sportswear manufacturer, known primarily for its career-oriented suits, has brought in Regino Collazzo, formerly a designer with Paul Stanley and Tahari, as design director for its women’s division. He succeeds Andrew Morgan.
Collazzo will oversee design for the branded Augustus business and its growing private label enterprise. He reports to Nella Hahn, president of the women’s division, and Chuck Krieger, president of the company and Hahn’s brother.
Krieger said Morgan’s leaving was amicable, and Collazzo’s joining the company offers an opportunity to update the collection. The new look hits the stores for spring and will be reflected in a new logo, which will be used on labels, hangtags and in print ads that will make their debut next month.
“We want to give the logo a more modern, sophisticated look to go with an updated feel that Regino is bringing to the line,” Krieger said. “While the career woman is still our customer, we want the clothes to be younger in feeling and more diversified.”
The new look includes some special embellishments, more novelty fabrics and fewer basics, he noted, as well as updated silhouettes.
The distribution center in Queens, a block from the firm’s sewing factory in Brooklyn, “will make for a more orderly flow of business and make us much more efficient,” Krieger said.
The shipping used to be handled at the factory, but better and larger space was needed to accommodate increased business in the firm’s in-stock suit program and its joint venture with designer Norma Kamali. Augustus produces Kamali suits and separates for the venture, which is called KA Associates.
“The in-stock program has been very successful for us, but is more demanding in terms of details like preticketing and stocking merchandise for just-in-time delivery,” Krieger said.
As part of the new marketing strategy, Augustus aims to cultivate its specialty store business. The company has added eight representatives to its road force in the last few months, resulting in opening 200 new accounts, Krieger said.