BEACH PATROL WIDENS BEAT, BUYS DEWEESE SWIMWEAR

Byline: Anne D’Innocenzio

NEW YORK — Fast-growing Beach Patrol Inc., Carson, Calif., is adding to its reach in the swimwear market with the acquisition of DeWeese Inc., Los Angeles.
Beach Patrol, which has specialized primarily in junior and contemporary misses’ swimwear, racked up sales of $60 million in the fiscal year ended June 30, 1994. The company was started in 1988.
DeWeese, whose swimwear is geared to the traditional misses’ and activewear markets, posted sales of $13 million last year.
Including its new acquisition, Beach Patrol, according to company officials, expects to do about $80 million in fiscal 1995.
Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. DeWeese’s brands include Choice, which features separates-oriented swimwear; DeWeese, a traditional misses’ line, and the licensed active-sport Jag swimwear line.
DeWeese Apparel Group has been set up as a Beach Patrol subsidiary to handle the three brands. Howie Greller, executive vice president of Beach Patrol, noted the DeWeese brand takes the company into the traditional misses’ area for the first time, while Jag provides an entrée into the active swimsuit arena. As part of the deal, Beach Patrol also gets a 50 percent stake in the Jag name worldwide and looks forward to licensing it for other categories. The remaining 50 percent is held by Schottenstein Stores, Columbus, Ohio.
Choice, Greller noted, will add to Beach Patrol’s own separates business done under the Swim Systems label.
Beach Patrol’s business also focuses on a variety of labels in juniors — Daffy Waterwear, Tango Rose and Rebel Beach — and contemporary misses’ — Baja Blue and Amber Bay.
Beach Patrol will continue DeWeese’s main facility in downtown Los Angeles for sewing and will call it the Beach Patrol Manufacturing Division. Remaining personnel will be transferred to Beach Patrol’s headquarters in Carson, where the company will continue its own established manufacturing, said Brian Zienteck, president and chief executive officer of Beach Patrol. He also noted that no layoffs are planned; rather the firm, looking to further expansion, plans to add 200 sewers for a total of 400.
John Weingarten, who was an owner and president of DeWeese, will run DeWeese Apparel Group as director, while his brother and business partner, Jim, who was executive vice president, will be the director of Beach Patrol Manufacturing. This manufacturing unit will oversee production of all DeWeese brands, as well as private label. It will also handle the overflow for Beach Patrol’s other labels.

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