Blog: Li & Fung sets sights on Europe

Joe Ayling | 1 March 2010

Sourcing giant Li & Fung further strengthened its own portfolio at the end of last week, when it acquired private-label apparel supplier Visage Group.

The deal is a further sign of Hong Kong-based Li & Fung's intention to grow a stable of worldwide businesses in addition to its sourcing activities for major brands and retailers.

It follows recent acquisitions of US-based children's wear maker Wear Me Apparel and handbag importer Van Zeeland.

That is not to say Li & Fung is letting up on sourcing by any means, having inked important supply chain deals with US retailers including The Talbots, Hudson's Bay, Liz Claiborne and Wal-Mart in the past year alone.

Li & Fung will pay up to GBP173m (US$264m) for UK-based Visage, which designs, imports and distributes fashion wear.

Visage, which operates in Manchester, employs over 500 people and in 2009 posted 16% turnover growth to GBP190m for the full fiscal year. It also has branches in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Dhaka and Delhi, aligning it well with Li & Fung's existing global network.

More importantly though, the Visage acquisition fits with Li & Fung's strategy of boosting its onshore presence in Europe. "This acquisition dramatically strengthens LF Europe's growth platform," says Li & Fung president Bruce Rockowitz.

Meanwhile, global retailer Gap Inc also announced investments in a European market last week, planning its first stores in Italy. The foray will see Gap and Banana Republic flagship stores open side by side in Milan this year.

By Joe Ayling, news editor.




BLOG

China still dominates apparel sourcing

The latest full-year data on US apparel import trends for 2017 suggests China will remain the dominant sourcing region for some time to come....

BLOG

Retail's rapid transformation requires "platform thinking"

There’s no doubt the retail industry is undergoing rapid transformation as technology continues to reshape how retailers think about their supply chains and meeting their customers’ needs. But to posi...

BLOG

NAFTA trade talks inch forward

Negotiators are meeting this week for the sixth round of NAFTA trade talks – and as soon as this deal has been repackaged, the spotlight could turn to the US free trade agreement with Central America....

BLOG

How can apparel firms stay competitive into the future?

Continuing with the publication of our Outlook 2018 reports last week, we looked at what apparel firms should be doing now if they want to remain competitive into the future....

just-style homepage



Forgot your password?