Global Icons acquires a majority stake in fashion retailer Fred Segal from Evolution Media Partners with plans to both expand the chain and move it into licensing, says Global Icons CEO Jeff Lotman. Terms weren’t disclosed; Evolution, which purchased a stake in Fred Segal in 2014, will retain a minority interest.
The chain, which will open its ninth location in Malibu, CA on April 6, will continue to be headed by President John Frierson and CEO Allison Samek, with Lotman as Chairman. Global Icons had been weighing buying a brand for about five years and had prior discussions involving electronics, food and other fashion labels before starting negotiations with Fred Segal about two months ago, says Lotman.
Fred Segal is “always changing and continues to be a destination and a pop culture retail icon that we will further invest in,” says Lotman. “I’m committed to preserving the history and integrity of the company while continuing to evolve the dynamic Fred Segal brand and experience.”
This is the first time Global Icons has owned a brand, and gives it a business that helps offset the natural ups and downs of an agency, says Lotman. From a Fred Segal standpoint, the new funding will help “supercharge” the brand’s growth in new categories and “take advantage of demand” for it “on a global level,” Frierson said in a statement.
In terms of brand expansion, Fred Segal has largely relied on collaborations including one for CB2 x Fred Segal indoor/outdoor furniture and accessories with Crate & Barrel’s CB2 18-store affiliate that targets younger consumers and another last fall with the UK headwear and apparel brand Kangol. There also will be co-brands for eyewear and health and beauty products, says Lotman.
The chain, which first opened in Malibu in 1961, has been expanding internationally during the past year, having added shop-in-shops in Zurich (2) and Bern, Switzerland with Swiss department store Globus and a 3,200-sq.-ft mall-based location in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It also added a 7,000-sq.-ft. store in Taipei, Taiwan. In addition to Malibu, Fred Segal also has a flagship store in West Hollywood and a location at Thomas Bradley International Airport in Los Angeles. Fred Segal executives have previously aired plans for having 20 stores within five years.
Global Icons, Jeff Lotman, CEO, 310-873-3560, email@example.com
Fred Segal, John Frierson, Pres., 310-432-0560