Volcom

Authentic brands group acquires volcom

by Stephen Garner

Authentic Brands Group (ABG) has purchased the intellectual property of Volcom from French luxury group Kering S.A. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Similar to the operating structure created when it acquired Aéropostale, ABG has taken a minority stake in Liberated Brands, the newly-formed operating company for Volcom. Todd Hymel and Volcom’s current management team have taken the majority stake in Liberated Brands and will maintain the Volcom operations based in the U.S., France, Australia and Japan with continued oversight of the brand’s product development, athlete marketing and its retail and wholesale businesses worldwide. ABG will focus on amplifying brand awareness and business development for Volcom while leveraging Liberated Brands’ specialized retail and wholesale operations as a platform for international expansion of complementary ABG-owned brands.

“Jamie’s commitment and conviction throughout the sale process was proof of his passion for the brand,” said Todd Hymel, CEO of Liberated Brands. “ABG has built an impressive portfolio by being a powerhouse in brand development and marketing. Jamie and his team share our vision and excitement for Volcom’s long-term growth and we are excited to be a part of this next chapter for the brand.”

“We are thrilled to have completed the purchase of Volcom,” added Jamie Salter, chairman and CEO of ABG. “For nearly three decades the Volcom family has created one of the most iconic brands in the skate, surf and snow markets. During the last few years, the brand has been consistently gaining traction with broader audiences around the world while staying true to its core. We could not be happier to finally get to work with this team.”

Through this acquisition, ABG diversifies its growing lifestyle pillar with the addition of America’s first brand dedicated to skate, surf and snow, and boosts the value of its portfolio to more than $9.3 billion in annual retail sales. With nearly 100 retail stores globally and distribution in 60 countries, Volcom boasts a strong presence in key markets around the world, with 45 percent of its revenue being driven by its loyal customers internationally.

The initial focus for Volcom will be on developing near and long-term strategies that reinforce the brand’s current positioning. ABG and Liberated Brands will continue to invest in and build upon the brand’s core men’s and snow businesses as well as fuel the momentum of its women’s and kid’s categories in North America and key international markets. Leveraging both companies’ in-house marketing expertise, ABG will expand the Volcom brand narrative by launching targeted digital campaigns and key influencer partnerships that reach and engage new Millennial and Gen Z audiences.

“Volcom is one of the world’s most sought-after lifestyle brands by board sports enthusiasts,” commented Nick Woodhouse, president and CMO of ABG. “Liberated Brands’ operational expertise combined with ABG’s brand building know-how and a global network of best-in-class partners, make an unstoppable combination. We look forward to joining forces to take this brand to new heights.”