Brooks Brothers officially has new ownership.
Authentic Brands Group LLC and SPARC Group LLC — a venture created by the brand management firm and mall giant Simon Property Group Inc. — announced today that they have completed the acquisition of the menswear retailer, which filed for Chapter 11 protection in early July.
As part of the transaction, SPARC assumes the role of core licensee for Brooks Brothers. It will manage the chain’s operations, including retail, wholesale and e-commerce, while ABG has purchased its intellectual property and will oversee all licensing partnerships, new business and brand development.
Additionally, ABG and SPARC will share brand marketing responsibilities, which are centered on “adapting Brooks Brothers for a new generation” by expanding its online presence and launching a “fresh slate” of collaborations.
“We are thrilled to bring this world-class brand into the fold,” ABG founder, chairman and CEO Jamie Salter said in a statement. “Brooks Brothers comes at an important time in ABG’s development as we are placing a significant emphasis on growing our retail and e-commerce footprint. We see a great opportunity to strategically expand this powerhouse brand across the globe.”
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SPARC CEO Marc Miller added, “Brooks Brothers’ new structure is another example of how ABG and SPARC are innovating the traditional brand model. Our strategic partnership will allow us to leverage the tremendous equity of this quintessential American brand through key partnerships, dynamic marketing and cutting-edge product design.”
Brooks Brothers currently has about 250 stores in North America and planned to shutter just over 50 locations as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis, which forced widespread closures across the retail sector. At least 125 of the storied American clothier’s brick-and-mortar units are expected to continue operating as part of the agreement. (It has more than 500 outposts around the world, as well as maintains wholesale partnerships with department stores including Nordstrom and Macy’s to sell its collections.)
SPARC now serves as the dedicated operating partner for Brooks Brothers, Nautica, Aéropostale and Lucky Brand: ABG and Simon recently became the core licensee of Lucky Brand Dungarees LLC, which also went bankrupt in early July. Along with mall owner General Growth Properties, now owned by Brookfield Property Partners, Simon also saved Aéropostale from liquidation in 2016.