ASB MAGAZINE: Overnight, Authentic Brands Group (ABG), a global brand owner, marketing and entertainment company announced the purchase of the intellectual property of Volcom from Kering S.A. Amongst ABG diverse portfolio includes brands such as Airwalk, Vision Street Wear and many more. ABG have formed an operating company ‘Liberated Brands’ with Todd Hymel and members of Volcom’s current management team taking the majority stake in Liberated Brands and maintaining Volcom operations based in the U.S., France, Australia and Japan with continued oversight of the brand’s product development, athlete marketing and its retail and wholesale businesses worldwide. Through this acquisition, ABG diversifies its growing lifestyle pillar with the addition of America’s first brand dedicated to skate, surf and snow, and boosts the value of its portfolio to more than $9.3 billion in annual retail sales.
“We are thrilled to have completed the purchase of Volcom,” said Jamie Salter, Chairman and CEO of ABG.
“For nearly three decades the Volcom family has created one of the most iconic brands in the skate, surf and snow markets. During the last few years, the brand has been consistently gaining traction with broader audiences around the world while staying true to its core. We could not be happier to finally get to work with this team.”
Closer to home, Volcom AUS/NZ General Manager Alison Thomas commented;
“The acquisition with ABG is a fantastic outcome for Volcom globally and all our partners. Same management, same vision and same momentum. It really is business as usual. I am really looking forward to the next chapter and continuing to do things just a little bit different from the pack,” Volcom AUS/NZ General Manager Alison Thomas
With nearly 100 retail stores globally and distribution in 60 countries, Volcom boasts a strong presence in key markets around the world, with 45% of its revenue being driven by its loyal customers internationally.
Similar to the operating structure created when it acquired Aéropostale, ABG has taken a minority stake in Liberated Brands, the newly-formed operating company for Volcom. Todd Hymel and Volcom’s current management team have taken the majority stake in Liberated Brands and will maintain the Volcom operations based in the U.S., France, Australia and Japan with continued oversight of the brand’s product development, athlete marketing and its retail and wholesale businesses worldwide. ABG will focus on amplifying brand awareness and business development for Volcom while leveraging Liberated Brands’ specialized retail and wholesale operations as a platform for international expansion of complementary ABG-owned brands.
“Jamie’s commitment and conviction throughout the sale process was proof of his passion for the brand,” said Todd Hymel, CEO of Liberated Brands. “ABG has built an impressive portfolio by being a powerhouse in brand development and marketing. Jamie and his team share our vision and excitement for Volcom’s long-term growth, and we are excited to be a part of this next chapter for the brand.”
Volcom AUS/NZ Marketing Manager Nick Boon observed;
“We are all really excited about this next chapter and leveraging all the new assets that we have with our new strategic partners. Good times ahead and a fantastic result for the brand & our retail partners,” said Nick Boon.
The initial focus for Volcom will be on developing near and long-term strategies that reinforce the brand’s current positioning. ABG and Liberated Brands will continue to invest in and build upon the brand’s core men’s and snow businesses as well as fuel the momentum of its women’s and kid’s categories in North America and key international markets. Leveraging both companies’ in-house marketing expertise, ABG will expand the Volcom brand narrative by launching targeted digital campaigns and key influencer partnerships that reach and engage new Millennial and Gen Z audiences.
“Volcom is one of the world’s most sought-after lifestyle brands by board sports enthusiasts,” said Nick Woodhouse, President and CMO of ABG. “Liberated Brands’ operational expertise combined with ABG’s brand building know-how and a global network of best-in-class partners, make an unstoppable combination.
We look forward to joining forces to take this brand to new heights.
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About Authentic Brands Group
Authentic Brands Group (ABG) is a brand development, marketing, and entertainment company, which owns a portfolio of global entertainment and lifestyle brands. Headquartered in New York City, ABG manages, elevates, and builds the long-term value of more than 50 consumer brands and properties by partnering with best-in-class manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers. Its brands have a global retail footprint in more than 100,000 points of sale across the luxury, specialty, department store, mid-tier, mass, and e-commerce channels and more than 4,900 branded freestanding stores and shop-in-shops around the world. ABG is committed to transforming brands by delivering compelling product, content, business, and immersive brand experiences. It creates and activates original marketing strategies to drive the success of its brands across all consumer touchpoints, platforms, and emerging media. ABG’s portfolio of iconic and world-renowned brands includes Marilyn Monroe®, Mini Marilyn®, Elvis Presley®, Muhammad Ali®, Shaquille O’Neal®, Dr. J®, Greg Norman®, Neil Lane®, Thalia®, Michael Jackson® (managed brand), Nautica®, Aéropostale®, Juicy Couture®, Vince Camuto®, Herve Leger®, Judith Leiber®, Frederick’s of Hollywood®, Nine West®, Frye®, Jones New York®, Louise et Cie®, Sole Society®, Enzo Angiolini®, CC Corso Como®, Hickey Freeman®, Hart Schaffner Marx®, Adrienne Vittadini®, Taryn Rose®, Bandolino®, Misook®, 1.STATE®, CeCe®, Chaus®, Spyder®, Tretorn®, Tapout®, Prince®, Volcom®, Airwalk®, Vision Street Wear®, Above The Rim®, Hind®, Thomasville®, Drexel®, and Henredon®. For more information, please visit authenticbrandsgroup.com.
Liberated Brands was created on the premise of profitably building brands for the long-term, while having fun doing so.
About Kering S.A.
A global Luxury group, Kering manages the development of a series of renowned Houses in Fashion,
Leather Goods, Jewelry and Watches. By placing creativity at the heart of its strategy, Kering enables its Houses to set new limits in terms of their creative expression while crafting tomorrow’s Luxury in a
sustainable and responsible way. We capture these beliefs in our signature: “Empowering Imagination”. In 2018, Kering had nearly 35,000 employees and revenue of €13.7 billion.