TA Associates backs US fashion brands


Mid-market private equity firm TA Associates has completed a majority investment in Dutch, the parent company for fashion brands JOIE, Equipment and Current/Elliott. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.

James Hart, a principal at TA Associates who will join the company’s board of directors, said, “With the recent addition of e-commerce and company-owned retail boutiques, we believe that the Dutch brands are well positioned to become leading lifestyle brands in the contemporary segment.”

Since January 2007, the company has experienced in excess of 30 per cent revenue and profit growth each year. The Dutch brands are sold in more than 2,000 stores in 75 countries, including department stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Barney’s, Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Printemps, as well as specialty boutiques in the US and international markets. JOIE and Equipment also both offer direct sales through the company’s recently launched e-commerce sites and through six retail boutiques in Los Angeles, New York and Newport Beach.

“We are very happy to be working with TA Associates,” said Dutch CEO and creative director Serge Azria, who will continue to lead the company following TA’s investment. “Out of the numerous offers we received, we chose TA because of their reputation, credibility and strength.”

“The new contemporary luxury segment has become an incredibly important revenue driver for both premium apparel companies and for retailers focused on this space,” added Jennifer Mulloy, a managing director at TA Associates who will also join the company’s Board of Directors. “We believe the contemporary niche represents an attractive opportunity for investment in the current economic environment, providing a great balance of design, quality and price, and that Dutch is well positioned to continue benefiting from these trends in the coming years.”

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