CRUNCH IN APPAREL PACT

NEW YORK — Crunch Fitness International, an edgy health club chain, has teamed up with two Italian firms, Manrico Holding SpA and Progetti International, to produce Crunch apparel and accessories.
As part of their new long-term venture, Crunch has turned over its licensing rights and worldwide distribution to the Italian firms. The newly formed company will operate as M.P. Enterprises and will be based in Perugia, Italy, where Manrico and Progetti each have their corporate headquarters.
Crunch gave the green light to Manrico, due partially to the fact that Prada Holding and BVM Holding are among its shareholders, according to Doug Levine, founder and president of Crunch. Knowing that Manrico, which owns Manrico Cashmere, makes cashmere for Prada, Louis Vuitton and Ralph Lauren, Crunch aims to upgrade its activewear collection, he added.
First-year projected wholesale volume for the new activewear collection is $5 million. In addition to overseas retailers and at the Crunch club in Tokyo, the line will be offered in the U.S. at Crunch’s 18 pro shops, Lucy.com and 35 specialty stores, Levine said.
Crunch was producing its activewear in-house. The deal also includes Crunch hats, umbrellas and other accessories. The company also has its own televised fitness program on ESPN, exercise music, books and videos.

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