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Adastria buys Californian apparel brand Velvet

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Adastria is to acquire 100 per cent of Californian contemporary apparel company Velvet, owner of the brand Velvet by Graham and Spencer.

Adastria is one of the largest apparel companies in Japan with revenue of approximately $1.8 billion. It operates 21 brands across Japan and Asia.

“Velvet is a distinguished brand in the US contemporary market, and we are delighted to welcome Velvet to the Adastria group,” said Masa Matsushita, representative director and COO of Adastria, announcing the deal. “This latest acquisition allows us to establish a strategic presence in North America and in the world of contemporary fashion, as we seek to transform Adastria into a leading global apparel company.”

Matsushita said the company has a successful track record growing brands and businesses by leveraging its strong value-chain management and brand management strategy.

“We have strong expertise in retail operations with more than 1400 retail stores and e-commerce operations throughout Japan and Asia. Working together with Velvet’s management team, we will accelerate the brand’s growth, especially in the direct-to consumer channels as we apply our expertise in retail and value-chain management,” he said.

Velvet is the second investment for Adastria in the US market. In April 2016, Adastria acquired a minority interest in Marine Layer, an upcoming apparel company based in San Francisco, recently named one of the “Hottest Brands of 2016” by Forbes magazine.

“Building upon our investments in Velvet and Marine Layer, we aim to strategically enhance our global brand portfolio moving forward,” said Matsushita.

Velvet by Graham and Spencer is known for its “modern, sophisticated staples with laid-back California attitude,” both for women and men. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Velvet has eight retail stores in the US, with a strong market presence through premium department stores and high-end specialty stores both in the US and abroad.

Henry Hirschowitz, Velvet’s co-founder and CEO said the deal marked a great opportunity for both companies.

“Velvet will provide a solid platform for Adastria, allowing the company to expand its presence in the North American Market. In addition, Velvet will greatly benefit from Adastria’s extensive resources which will enhance our product range and appeal in a greater way to our Velvet customers.

“Furthermore, with Adastria’s knowledge in retail and online, we feel strongly that further opportunities for Velvet will materialise. We are extremely fortunate and honored to become part of the Adastria Family of brands. The Velvet team is totally committed to making a meaningful contribution to Adastria”

Founded in 1997 by Henry Hirschowitz and Jenny Graham and shortly after joined by Toni Spencer, Velvet has collaborated in the past with supermodel Lily Aldridge and will be collaborating this summer with another supermodel, Kirsty Hume.