Blog: What’s next for Kellwood?
Leonie Barrie | 13 February 2008
After five months of wrangling, Sun Capital has finally bought Kellwood. The private equity group today said its affiliate, Cardinal Integrated LLC, has acquired about 82% of Kellwood’s shares – giving it ownership of the struggling apparel maker. Kellwood will now be merged into Cardinal and become a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company.
The private equity firm, which first expressed interest in buying Kellwood last September, has so far said very little about its plans to rejeuvenate the business. All we know is that it is “prepared to commit substantial resources beyond the purchase price to build Kellwood's business,” and “develop its branded portfolio.”
Which isn’t a world away from the strategy that Kellwood was already pursuing.
The company’s management last year come up with a own turnaround plan based on reducing its exposure to private labels and repositioning the business so that 50% to 70% of its revenues would come from its higher-end lifestyle brands like Vince and Hollywould.
In January it sold its Smart Shirts shirt-making business to Youngor Group for $120m, and said it wanted its own retail operations to grow from 8% to 20% of sales.
It even consolidated divisions, trimming its women's sportswear business from seven to three operating divisions in a bid to make the organisation more agile, improve speed to market, and cut costs.
Aside from more cost cutting and consolidation – both of which are easier to do as a private rather than a public company – it’s hard to see what more the new owners can do.
And with stonger, more powerful competitors like Liz Claiborne and Jones Apparel Group also struggling to find ways to shore up their own businesses, despite having a roster more powerful brands than Kellwood, the prospects for success must look challenging, to say the least.
Fresh from their disappointment at seeing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade deal abandoned last month with an executive order by President Donald Trump, the US apparel and footwear sector...
With the ultimate aim of ensuring all the cotton in its products is sourced sustainably, value clothing retailer Primark is adamant that having a business model focused on offering the lowest prices o...
Last week we marked the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States by taking a closer look at what's at stake for the textile and apparel trade – especially his promises t...
Continuing our look at what lies ahead for the apparel industry and its supply chain in 2017, the panel of industry experts consulted by just-style last week tackled likely shifts in the sourcing land...
- China leads US apparel sources with falling prices
- Hard hit Turkish industry is not knocked out
- Vietnam grows share of US apparel imports in 2016
- "Power of the many" drives change at Otto Group
- US apparel sector braces for potential cost hikes
- US Q4 in brief – Kohl's, L Brands
- Bangladesh crackdown has cost garment sector $100m
- Adidas and Burberry recognised for sustainability
- Macy's will "do the right thing", says Lundgren
- VF Corp sees Q4 and FY earnings tumble
- When Things Go Wrong - A Practical Guide to Managing Common Problems in Apparel Sourcing
- Outdoor performance apparel 2016: A broader perspective
- Technical textile markets: product developments and innovations, December 2016
- Southeast Asia strategic sourcing review – a focus on Cambodia, Vietnam and Myanmar
- Global market review of lingerie – forecasts to 2022