PVH Corp., the big American apparel group that bought GH Bass for $79 million in 1987, has announced the sale of most of the shoe brand's assets to another American clothing company, G-III Apparel, for $50 million in cash. The transaction, which is expected to close before the end of this year, will result in a pretax loss of around $20 million for PVH.
In particular, G-III, which produces licensed apparel for professional sports teams and various brands, is buying 160 GH Bass outlet stores. Morris Goldfarb, chairman, president and chief executive of G-III said that the acquisition of the stores “will integrate well into our retail platform and provides us with a powerful opportunity to continue to grow and diversify our business.”
Founded in 1956 in New York's Garment District by Aaron Goldfarb, a Holocaust survivor, G-III Apparel has made several acquisitions in the last few years. Notably, in 2008, it bought the Wilsons Leather chain, which now has more than 130 stores in 30 states.
PVH stated that GH Bass has been “a positive and important contributor” since its acquisition, but added that the group wanted to focus on its higher-margin lifestyle apparel brands, led by Calvin Klein and the more recently acquired Tommy Hilfiger. PVH bought another big apparel company, Warnaco, at the beginning of this year, raising its annual turnover to about $8 billion.
G-III Apparel already has a relationship with PVH as a licensee for Calvin Klein sportswear and the operator of some Calvin Klein Performance stores. It also makes Tommy Hilfiger outerwear. A year ago, it bought Villebrequin, a leading global supplier of swimwear, resort wear and accessories, which also has its own and franchised stores.