NEW YORK, May 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Iconix Brand Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: ICON - News; "Iconix" or the "Company"), today announced that the Company has acquired a 50% interest in Hardy Way, LLC, the owner of the Ed Hardy brand and trademarks. Ed Hardy is the world's pre-eminent brand in tattoo inspired lifestyle products. The brand has a tremendous celebrity following with fans such as Madonna, Britney Spears and Kanye West who are frequently seen wearing Ed Hardy designs.
The Company paid $17 million for its interest in Hardy Way, comprised of $9 million in cash and $8 million in stock. In addition, the sellers could be entitled to receive an additional $1 million in stock pursuant to an earn-out based on 2009 royalties received by Hardy Way. Hardy Way estimates that 2009 royalty revenue will be approximately $10 million.
Neil Cole, Chairman and CEO, Iconix stated, "We are excited to have the opportunity to participate in the continued success of the Ed Hardy brand and believe there are tremendous growth opportunities worldwide." Mr. Cole added, "We also believe that by owning the brand alongside Don Ed Hardy, the founder, there will be opportunities to further leverage his iconic name along with his new artwork."
Don Ed Hardy, right, commented, "As demand for my artwork continues to skyrocket, I felt it was time to take on a partner that could help me manage the demand and opportunities for the Ed Hardy name. Iconix is at the forefront of brand management and clearly has the capabilities to dramatically grow the Ed Hardy business. I'm thrilled to have them as a partner."
Don Ed Hardy and his artwork date back to 1967 when Hardy transformed the tattoo business into an artistic medium. Hardy is known as "the godfather of modern tattoo" for his sophistication, depth and sense of experimentation. Since 2003, the Ed Hardy brand has been run by Nervous Tattoo, which is owned by Christian Audigier. Today Ed Hardy is a global consumer products brand sold in over 55 countries and 50 different categories including outerwear, swimwear, fragrances, energy drinks, home goods and bags.
Iconix Brand Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ICON - News) owns, licenses and markets a growing portfolio of consumer brands including CANDIE'S®, BONGO®, BADGLEY MISCHKA®, JOE BOXER® RAMPAGE® MUDD®, LONDON FOG®, MOSSIMO® OCEAN PACIFIC®, DANSKIN® ROCA WEAR®, CANNON®, ROYAL VELVET®, FIELDCREST®, CHARISMA® STARTER® and WAVERLY®. The Company licenses its brands to a network of leading retailers and manufacturers that touch every major segment of retail distribution from the luxury market to the mass market in both the U.S. and around the world. Iconix, through its in-house advertising, promotion and public relations agency, markets its brands to continually drive greater consumer awareness and equity.