NEW YORK, May 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- SANDOW® (sandow.com), owner of Fred Segal®, today announced that it has partnered with equity investor Evolution Media Partners (Evolution), and has hired veteran retail chief Paul Blum to lead the expansion of the iconic California lifestyle brand. The forthcoming global luxury retail concept will blend shopping with innovative art, culture and entertainment experiences. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Mr. Blum, best known for leading the growth of premier global brands such as David Yurman, Kenneth Cole and Juicy Couture, has been named Chief Executive Officer, and will be based in SANDOW's New York headquarters at Rockefeller Center. Evolution is a joint venture between Evolution Media Capital (EMC), an entertainment, media and sports merchant bank formed in partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA); TPG Growth, the middle market and growth equity investment platform of global investment firm TPG; and Participant Media, the global entertainment company founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll.
Leading entertainment and sports agency CAA will provide expertise in the areas of licensing, branding, digital strategy, content creation and beyond.
Since 1961, Fred Segal has been steeped in Hollywood culture and is known as the style destination for everyone from celebrities to locals. The retail icon has discovered and launched some of the hottest brands in beauty and apparel.
"Fred Segal has maintained its authenticity for more than 50 years. Working with powerhouse partners like Evolution, CAA, TPG and Participant Media – as well as Paul Blum, an experienced CEO with deep roots in retail – will allow us to reinvent the retail experience across America and the rest of the world," said Adam I. Sandow, Chairman and CEO of SANDOW.
The company has already announced several new growth initiatives, including expansion into markets from Las Vegas to Tokyo, as well as branded products and designer collaborations.
Together, the partners envision a major reinvention of the luxury shopping experience, under the Fred Segal brand, which will combine fashion with dining, entertainment, cultural events and health and wellness programs in footprints of up to 50,000 square feet. The team is targeting up to 10 next-generation Fred Segal lifestyle centers in the U.S. and abroad over the next five to seven years.
"The convergence of fashion, technology and media has created a great opportunity to leverage Fred Segal's Southern California celebrity heritage," said Mr. Blum, who has spent his career building global iconic fashion brands. "I'm very excited to partner with SANDOW, an innovation-rich brand and media company, and our new investors Evolution Media Partners, to build a new and engaging customer experience in the luxury sector."
"We see in Fred Segal a special opportunity for a lifestyle brand that has already established itself as one of luxury, fashion and the always imaginative California spirit," said Rick Hess, Co-Managing Partner of EMC. "Paul brings more than 25 years of experience leading some of the world's best-known consumer product companies. We couldn't have more confidence in his ability, strategic vision, passion for innovation and deep understanding of design, manufacturing and retailing to lead Fred Segal to the next level of growth."
While sites for the first full-scale Fred Segal lifestyle locations are still being developed, some elements of the new concept can be seen at its new anchor location in the newly-renovated Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX, and will be previewed at the Fred Segal Collective, a partnership with SLS Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, opening in August 2014. The seven Fred Segal-branded retail experiences located throughout the property mark the first time a single brand partner has occupied all of the retail space in a hotel.
The stores at the SLS will provide a brand immersion experience across select retail categories including men's, women's, accessories, jeans and shoes. A Fred Segal concept is also set to open in Japan in 2015, providing another opportunity to introduce consumers to the new vision for the global Fred Segal brand.
ABOUT FRED SEGAL®
For more than 50 years and three generations, Fred Segal has been an iconic shopping destination known internationally for curating the hippest merchandise and introducing the world to powerhouse cosmetic and fashion brands. From its early days as the pioneer of designer jeans to its current status as an emporium for leading and emerging designers, this one-of-a-kind retail brand has maintained an international following and become a pop culture icon. With three Los Angeles locations, Fred Segal is synonymous with LA style and casual chic, attracting celebrities and locals alike with its highly curated selection of merchandise. Fred Segal will open seven stores in Las Vegas in August 2014 and in Tokyo and other locations across Japan in 2015. Contact Fred Segal's New York headquarters at 212.842.2042.
Founded in 2003 by visionary entrepreneur Adam I. Sandow, SANDOW builds smart businesses—driven by innovation and design—that deliver powerful products, services and experiences to a highly selective audience. Serving consumers and businesses across the luxury, design and beauty categories, SANDOW's diverse portfolio includes media brands Interior Design, Luxe Interiors + Design, NewBeauty and Worth, as well as creative management agency Culture + Commerce, iconic retailer Fred Segal and global materials consultancy Material ConneXion. With offices around the world, the company's global headquarters are in New York City's iconic Time & Life Building, with corporate headquarters in South Florida.
ABOUT EVOLUTION MEDIA PARTNERS (Evolution)
Evolution Media Partners is a joint venture between TPG Growth, the middle market and growth equity investment platform of global investment firm TPG, and Participant Media, the global entertainment company founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll. Evolution will partner with and invest up to $350 million in growth-stage media, sports, and global entertainment company entertainment companies. EMC is a merchant bank focused on the media and sports industries, formed as a partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA), and offering investment advisory, asset management, industry research, and capital-raising services. In the media rights space, EMC provides a wide array of advisory services including strategic analysis, valuation and negotiation of media rights and regional sports network planning and operational strategy.