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Metal Mulisha has seen a ton of growth the last few years, and I stopped in to talk to VP of Sales Bill Gage at Agenda.
I asked him if that rapid growth is still going on.
Gage said the brand is still doing well, but the growth pace slowed a bit in the past year.
“When you start to become a bigger brand, business becomes more complicated and it is harder to keep up that same growth rate,” he said.
Gage said the brand hit its 2010 projection literally on the last shipping day of the year. “We did it without compromising our integrity and making any stupid distribution decisions,” he added.
One of the shining stars from last year’s line was Metal Mulisha Junior’s collection. While Junior's overall is still suffering, the Metal Mulisha girls line grew to become a bigger portion of Metal Mulisha’s overall business.
Gage said Junior's was about 13% to 15% of the business. In Q4 of last year, it grew to 38% of the brand’s overall shipping number. I asked him if most of his Junior’s business was from tees and Gage said it was quite the contrary. The brand did the bulk of its business in accessories, handbags, fashion tops and dresses.
For next year, Gage said Metal Mulisha hired a few key international sales managers to help build the brand outside the U.S.
Domestically, he said Metal Mulisha will continue to grow as planned. “We feel there has been a cleansing in the marketplace of smaller periphery brands that we feel kind of drafted on us in the past. So we expect the majority of growth to come from existing dealers,” he added.
For this coming year, Metal Mulisha plans to ramp up support for its key retailers. “We have a slogan for supporting retailers called ‘Wage war in the store,’ which translates to investing more into our premium retailers.”