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Tiffany Montgomery
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Quiksilver sells swim brands

By Tiffany Montgomery
April 14, 2010 8:58 AM

Updated 12:48 p.m. with more information about Breaking Waves. New information is in bold type.

Quiksilver said today it has an agreement to sell its swim portfolio to AOM Holdings, LLC.

Brands included in the sale are Raisins, Raisins Girls, Leilani, Island Soul and Island Escape. Roxy swim is not included in the sale.

Breaking Waves International, which is associated with AOM Holdings, has signed a license in perpetuity for the Raisin family of swim brands. Breaking Waves currently makes swimwear under the Breaking Waves label for toddlers through tweens, the company said, and sells to "every major retailer in the United States, including Macy's, Dillard's and Nordstrom," according to a company representative.

The first Raisins line released by Breaking Waves will be the Spring 2011 season. Quiksilver will continue to handle shipping and reorders for spring and summer this year.

Going forward, Quiksilver wants to focus on its core businesses of Quiksilver, Roxy, DC and Mervin, said Bruce Thomas, vice president of investor relations.

He did not know the exact number of Quiksilver employees that worked on the swim brands, but said the total number was in the single digits. The details are still being worked out, but he believes most are moving to Breaking Waves.

Breaking Waves said in a brief release that Brian Ivanhoe, the current vice president of Raisins, is joining Breaking Waves.

The sale is another step in Quiksilver’s efforts to streamline its operations, Bruce added.

Since Quiksilver is continuing to streamline its business, I asked specifically about Mervin, which as a maker of snowboards, does not really fit into the company’s softgoods wheelhouse.

Bruce pointed to a quote from Americas President Craig Stevenson in its release (below) that specifically noted Quiksilver is increasingly focused on Mervin.

The company views Mervin as an up-and-comer, Bruce said, and is very much a part of Quiksilver’s mountain strategy.

Here are the releases, first from Quiksilver and then from Breaking Waves.

Quiksilver, Inc. Sells “Raisins” Portfolio of Women’s Swim Brands

Huntington Beach, California, April 14, 2010 — Quiksilver, Inc. (NYSE: ZQK) today announced that it has reached an agreement to sell its “Raisins”, “Raisins Girls”, “Leilani”, “Island Soul”, and “Island Escape” women’s swim brands to AOM Holdings, LLC. Quiksilver has operated these women’s swim businesses, primarily in its Americas region, since 1994.

Craig Stevenson, President of Quiksilver Americas, stated, “As we review our operating priorities we are keenly focused on our core businesses of Quiksilver, Roxy, DC and, increasingly, Mervin.

In that context, and after evaluating opportunities for our other women’s swim brands, we felt the best course of action for our shareholders, our customers and our employees was to sell these women’s swim brands to AOM Holdings, who came forward with an attractive offer. AOM has extensive experience in the swim category and we are pleased that they have expressed their intent to continue to operate these brands within their existing channels of distribution.”


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