Nautica signs with four new partners

Michele SanFilippo, March 8, 2004

Nautica Apparel, the licensing division of Nautica Enterprises, has entered into partnerships in the home arena with Zorlu USA, Welspun USA, Berkshire Blanket and Kaltex Home. The first two licensees will be replacing programs previously held by Springs Industries and American Pacific.

Each licensee has launched new product categories for spring 2004 that will cater to department stores and specialty retailers at consistent pricing structures. According to company spokesman Jonathan Shows, "Nautica's new product offerings are designed to enhance our existing product assortments and answer increasing consumer demand for new and inventive Nautica home products."

He added that the collection continues to experience growth across all categories and to explore new areas for growth.

David Chu, CEO, founder and designer of the Nautica brand added, "As part of our strategy to expand Nautica Home's product assortment, our new partnerships … will enhance our already successful Nautica Home business and enable us to further develop in the growing home textile business."

Nautica has partnered with Zorlu USA, a Turkish mill and sourcing provider with manufacturing in Istanbul and distribution out of Atlanta, to expand its presence in solid color sheets, knit sheets and flannel.

Nautica will introduce sheet programs ranging from 270-thread-count to 500-thread-count in solids, jacquards and dobby designs. In addition, a full range of all-new jersey knit and flannel solid colors, yarn dyes and prints were introduced during February market, marking Zorlu's first licensing agreement.

Springs will continue to manufacture and distribute Nautica's solid-color sheet program through June, while Zorlu takes over starting in July.

According to Atiye Timuralp, sales and marketing manager for Zorlu USA, "We are thrilled, and think we will create a long partnership with Nautica that will benefit retailers since we are Turkey's largest vertically integrated mill with 10 years' experience working in the U.S. market."

Welspun USA launched an updated line of towels and bath rugs for spring 2004, including a "Crew Classics" program in 26 solid colors with coordinating bath rugs, a "Stateroom" luxury towel available in 12 colors and signature jacquards. The company is taking over the solid-color bath towel and rug programs from American Pacific, Nautica's licensee for fashion bedding and coordinating bath items.

Berkshire Blanket will produce a line of high-quality blankets and throws that includes fleece, cotton and wool fabrications in classic Nautica apparel designs, trim details and finishing.

Kaltex Home, a Mexico-based company, will help Nautica Home move into that market for the first time. Kaltex will manufacture, distribute and market Nautica Home in Mexico.

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