C&C California Merges With Liz Claiborne

Liz Claiborne Inc. announced last week it has agreed to purchase all of the equity interest in C & C California. The purchase price consists of an initial payment of approximately $28 million. The transaction is expected to close by the end of January 2005.

C & C California, which has been a hit with stockists and editors alike, creates chic, California-inspired basics with an emphasis on classy comfort, premium fabrics, simple detailing and vibrant, tasteful colors. C & C primarily targets the fashion-conscious woman between the ages of 18 and 45, as well as baby boomers. C & C’s products have a broad appeal, offering a relaxed, comfortable and quality assortment.

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Currently, women’s products account for approximately 96% of net sales while the recently launched men’s and children’s products account for the remaining 4% of net sales. C & C’s products include its signature t-shirt collection and, in 2005, will be expanded to include a variety of casual sportswear, including denim-related products and woven items including trousers, shirts and skirts.

Commenting on the announcement, Paul R. Charron, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Liz Claiborne Inc., said: “We are quite pleased to announce this acquisition. C & C is one of the most successful new brands in the contemporary zone, an area we have found to be particularly attractive. The addition of C & C to our portfolio provides further channel diversification through its select specialty store and high-end department store distribution. C & C has significant organic growth potential in its signature t-shirt line and will rapidly evolve into a full lifestyle collection of casual sportswear items. We also feel there are abundant brand extension opportunities in non-apparel categories, as well as in licensing and additional international distribution.”

Claire Stansfield and Cheyann Benedict, the co-founders of C & C, will remain with the Company as Co-Presidents.

Claire Stansfield and Cheyann Benedict, co-founders of C & C, said: “We are thrilled to be part of the Liz Claiborne family, and are excited to have the opportunity to work with a company with so much experience in operations, sourcing and expertise in building worldwide brands. We started the company in 2002 with a plan to create an alternative California lifestyle brand for all ages, shapes and sizes — a classic, easy and cool brand for the whole family. We could not be more proud to be part of a company that understands our vision and has an amazing team managing and guiding brands to worldwide recognition.”

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