Japanese clothing retailer Fast Retailing Co has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire majority control of J Brand Holdings, LLC from Star Avenue Capital and J Brand management. J Brand is a leading contemporary fashion brand based in Los Angeles.
As part of the Transaction, Fast Retailing—which operates Uniqlo stores—will acquire an 80.1% stake in J Brand, and the balance will be owned by the management of J Brand. The transaction is expected to close by the end of December 2012, subject to customary closing and regulatory approvals.
J Brand is a leading contemporary fashion company with significant experience in women’s and men’s apparel, particularly in the denim category. Founded in 2005 by Jeff Rudes, Chief Executive Officer, the company has developed a variety of unique denim fabrications. Today, J Brand is well-recognized for its minimal yet sophisticated product design, beautiful silhouette and perfect fit.
Star Avenue Capital acquired a controlling interest in the company in 2010, and J Brand has built a solid operational platform to become one of the leading brands in the category, with its products sold in over 2,000 specialty boutiques and luxury retailers in more than 20 countries worldwide. J Brand is a highly profitable company with its reported net sales of approximately $124 million (approximately 10 billion Japanese yen) for the fiscal year ended December 2011.
The purpose of the planned acquisition of J Brand is to extend the Fast Retailing group’s brand portfolio among the affordable luxury apparel category, and to leverage J Brand’s know-how in the area of premium denim and strengthen the group’s capability to develop denim products.
“Our planned acquisition will extend our brand portfolio among the affordable luxury apparel category and strengthen our group’s capability in the denim category,” said Tadashi Yanai, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Fast Retailing.