ARIS SHRINKS LOSSES IN FIRST QUARTER

NEW YORK — Aris Industries, which owns the XOXO junior brand, slightly trimmed its losses in the first quarter ended March 31 to $7.1 million from $7.3 million.
Sales increased 52.4 percent to $42.9 million from $28.1 million, according to Aris’s 10-Q. The increase stemmed from $23.8 million in sales of XOXO, acquired last August.
Sales of Perry Ellis products increased by $1.3 million, but the licensed FUBU boys’ sportswear line declined by $5.4 million and its Members Only and private label group each fell $2.5 million.
Gross margins benefited from the inclusion of the higher-margin XOXO business as well as improvement at Perry Ellis, which includes outerwear and loungewear.
The year-ago quarter includes a write-off of about $3.75 million of its license for Perry Ellis as part of the agreement that allowed Arnold Simon to acquire control of the firm.
Simon, now president and chief executive officer, had been president and ceo of Designer Holdings, the maker of CK Calvin Klein Jeans.
The year-ago period also included $2.4 million in severance for its former president, Charles Ramat.
The latest quarter included $1.1 million in restructuring charges, primarily for severance, as part of a continuing restructuring of the corporate office and distribution facilities.
The latest quarter also included $1 million in start-up costs for various licensing agreements.
Among its new licenses, Baby Phat women’s sportswear and Brooks Bros. golfwear will launch this year. Stetson sportswear and Cynthia Rowley sportswear will bow in 2001.