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Business Update: Naked Brands, Bendon Merge; BCBG Sells Lola Domain

BCBG finds a taker for, the domain for its younger brand, while intimates companies Naked Brand and Bendon unite.

Naked cozies up with Bendon

This week, Naked Brand Group and Bendon Limited announced a merger, which will make the new entities wholly owned subsidiaries of Bendon Group Holdings Limited, a new Australian holding company.

Bendon, an intimate apparel and swimwear house, operates 10 brands including Davenport, Fayreform and the Heidi Klum and Stella McCartney licenses.

“This transformative merger will create a powerful portfolio of iconic innerwear, sleepwear and swimwear brands. We believe this merger will enable the combined company to strengthen its global industry leadership and continue to drive growth over the long-term,” said Justin Davis-Rice, executive chairman of Bendon.

Naked, which is sold in major department stores and direct to consumer online, has become known for creating products that feel weightless next to the skin. The company also currently has a collaboration with NBA star Dwayne Wade.

The deal is subject to approval by Naked’s stockholders as well as the typical regulatory approvals. Once the agreement if finalized, shareholders of both companies will become shareholders of the holding company.

BCBG sells Lola domain

A bankruptcy court has authorized BCBG Max Azria to sell the domain for Lola, it’s secondary label.

The transaction for the domain, which does not include the intellectual property, will close for $550,000 in cash.

The fashion company, which filed for bankruptcy in March, launched Lola as a standalone retail concept in the Mall of America in 2011. The aim was to attract young women ages 16 to 26 with fast fashion housed in stores with a funky, cool vibe.

BCBG’s troubles mirror those of other contemporary fashion houses of late: mounting debt, changing consumer tastes and slowing mall traffic. The company tried to restructure its debt, switch to an e-commerce only model and shuffle its C-suite but ultimately it succumbed to the virus that’s been spreading across retail, claiming The Limited, Rue 21, Wet Seal and Payless, among others.

Meanwhile, Max Azria, who launched BCBG in 1989 and left the company in 2016, has moved on to a new role as CEO and partner of bug deterrent company called AppLight.