Is Rebecca Minkoff on lockdown?
is Rebecca Minkow close to a deal to sell their lifestyle brand?
Sources say Minkoff is in talks to sell her 16-year-old company, which is saddled with debt and has faced difficulties during the pandemic. Aimed at the millennial consumer, the brand manufactures and markets handbags, clothing, shoes and accessories and has just launched a household line.
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The company is owned by Rebecca Minkow, co-founder and creative director, and her brother Uri Minkoff, co-founder and chief executive officer.
Uri Minkoff told WWD on Monday: “As a privately held, family-owned company, we do not comment on rumors or speculation and are focused on setting the stage for the company’s future growth. We have had, and continue to receive, requests from parties, be it operations, supply chain, manufacturing or finance. We evaluate them on a case-by-case basis as the goal is always to maximize the company’s growth over the long term.”
Reports have been circulating in the market that a deal could potentially close this week. It could not be found out who bought the brand. Jason Rabin, CEO of Centric Brands, said, “We are not among the parties looking to acquire the brand.” Yehuda Shmidman, CEO of WHP Global, said he is not seeking a deal either. Bluestar Alliance CEO Joey Gabbay said he passed it on, and neither Zachary Sigel, co-founder of Marquee Brands, nor Jamie Salter, chairman and CEO of Authentic Brands Group, could be reached for comment.
A source said Minkoff may be in talks with a manufacturing partner rather than an IP partner.
Sources indicated that Minkoff plans to go down the route of an Article 9, a secured transaction in which the borrower agrees to offer personal property as security for a debt. This route has none of the shielding that bankruptcy would give them.
According to sources, a deal was struck very quickly, and the offer could be around $15 million. A source said one of the factories was owed $25 million.
During the pandemic, Minkoff acknowledged that business has been a challenge. She said in an interview last June that when the pandemic began, retailers abruptly canceled orders and the brand began to focus more on a direct-to-consumer business.
“The pandemic brought everything to a standstill for a good six to nine months,” Minkoff said at the time. “We’re now working with these stores again and just making sure we’re prepared for another relationship, not in a bad way at all. We want to make sure we’re as profitable as possible wherever we do business. It’s not about being everywhere, it’s about optimizing every store we’re in so we’re among the ones doing the most business.”
Minkoff said last June that their factors, Rosenthal & Rosenthal, were “amazing.”
“They made a decision from their heart at the moment and not from what they saw on paper. to call Michael [Stanley, currently senior adviser, the factoring division], and say, “I’m in Paris and I’m having a panic attack.” You must make a decision from your heart, not numbers. The fact that we’ve built a relationship that goes beyond lending money, he and the team have consistently pushed through and supported us in a way that other people just short of the bottom line haven’t.”
The Minkoffs have built their brand that engages consumers on social media. The company was among the first to offer “see now, buy now” collections, a consumer video wall in its flagship, interactive mirrors in fitting rooms and wearables. In September, Minkoff became the first major American designer to make the Collection available through NFT. In a new tech-forward collaboration with Yahoo, the project offered digital versions of Minkoff’s fall/holiday looks along with immersive online and augmented reality experiences.
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