The Jones Group Inc. (ticker: JNY, exchange: New York Stock Exchange (.N))
News Release -
Jones Apparel Group, Inc. Announces Letter of Intent to Enter Into a Licensing Agreement for Esprit Women's and Young Women's Footwear, Handbags and Small Leather Goods
NEW YORK, June 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Jones Apparel Group, Inc.
(NYSE: JNY) today announced the signing of a letter of intent to enter into a
licensing agreement with a subsidiary of Esprit Holdings Limited
(SEHK:330; LSE:EPT LI) to manufacture and distribute women's and young women's
footwear, luggage, handbags and small leather goods. These ESPRIT, ESPRIT
SPORT, ESPRIT DE CORP, and EDC by ESPRIT branded products will be distributed
exclusively by the Nine West Group Division to department stores, retail
specialty stores and other direct to consumer venues throughout the United
States and Puerto Rico. The licensing agreement calls for an initial term of
five years with a renewal option of an additional five years should certain
conditions be met.
Rhonda Brown, President and CEO of Nine West Group, stated, "The ESPRIT
name is one of the most widely-recognizable brands among consumers today. It
is a perfect fit for us and compliments our existing brand portfolio while
allowing us to further leverage our infrastructure." Ms. Brown went on to
say, "We intend to launch the business during the August footwear market in
Heinz Krogner, Executive Director of Esprit Holdings Limited commented,
"We are very excited to have joined forces with Nine West Group, a highly
successful U.S. designer and marketer of women's shoes and accessories, to
establish our first line of U.S. licensed products since our acquisition of
the U.S. trademarks."
Commenting on this announcement, Peter Boneparth, President and CEO of
Jones Apparel Group, Inc., said, "The addition of this well-known brand to our
portfolio and the development of product within our established core
competencies of footwear and handbags is commensurate with our stated growth
strategy. We are very excited with the long-term potential of this licensing
Jones Apparel Group, Inc. (www.jny.com), a Fortune 500 Company, is a
leading designer and marketer of branded apparel, footwear and accessories.
The Company's nationally recognized brands include: Jones New York; Lauren by
Ralph Lauren, Ralph by Ralph Lauren, and Polo Jeans Company, which are
licensed from Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation; Evan-Picone, Rena Rowan, Norton
McNaughton, Gloria Vanderbilt, Erika, Energie, Currants, Jamie Scott, Todd
Oldham, Nine West, Easy Spirit, Enzo Angiolini, Bandolino, Napier and Judith
Jack. The Company also markets costume jewelry under the Tommy Hilfiger brand
licensed from Tommy Hilfiger Corporation and the Givenchy brand licensed from
Givenchy Corporation. Celebrating more than 30 years of service, the Company
has built a reputation for excellence in product quality and value, and in
Esprit Holdings Limited (www.espritholdings.com) is a constituent stock of
the MSCI Hong Kong Index, and its subsidiaries are engaged in the retail and
wholesale distribution of quality lifestyle products under its globally
recognized ESPRIT brand and of cosmetic products under its RED EARTH brand.
The Group controls retail space of over 3 million square feet in more than 40
countries worldwide. It operates approximately 500 directly managed retail
outlets and has over 2,000 franchised shops.
Certain statements herein are "forward-looking statements" made pursuant
to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
of 1995. Such forward-looking statements represent the Company's expectations
or beliefs concerning future events that involve risks and uncertainties,
including the strength of the economy and the overall level of consumer
spending, the performance of the Company's products within the prevailing
retail environment, and other factors which are set forth in the Company's
2001 Form 10-K and in all filings with the SEC made by the Company subsequent
to the filing of the Form 10-K. The Company does not undertake to publicly
update or revise its forward-looking statements as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise.
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SOURCE Jones Apparel Group, Inc.
Web site: http: //www.jny.com
CONTACT: Wesley R. Card, Chief Operating and Financial Officer, or Anita Britt, Executive Vice President - Finance, +1-215-785-4000, both of Jones Apparel Group