Sports Apparel Brand Icebreaker Gets New Owner

The transaction is set to close in early 2018 and is expected to be immediately accretive to VF’s earnings per share.

GLOBAL–The VF Corporation has signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire New Zealand-based outdoor and sports apparel brand Icebreaker.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed; however, the transaction is expected to close in early 2018 and the addition of the Icebreaker brand to VF’s portfolio is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings per share.

The Icebreaker brand was founded in 1995 on the belief that “nature always has a better solution” and features Merino wool, plant-based fibers and recycled fibers throughout its entire product assortment. Today, the company’s products are sold in 47 countries through wholesale channels, branded retail and e-commerce platforms. On a 12-month basis, Icebreaker has generated approximately $150 million in revenue.

“I founded Icebreaker to offer a natural choice to adventurers, and to build a global brand from New Zealand,” says Jeremy Moon, founder, Icebreaker. “Our partnership with VF provides us with the largest platform in the world to tell our story, access new markets and reach new consumers at an accelerated pace. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our global Icebreaker brand team and for our wool suppliers to introduce a whole new universe of consumers to the benefits of sustainably farmed, ethically sourced, New Zealand Merino wool.”

“Bringing the Icebreaker brand into the VF portfolio is a special opportunity,” says Steve Rendle, chairman, president and chief executive officer, VF Corporation. “Its natural fiber focus is an ideal complement to our SmartWool brand, which also features Merino in its clothing and accessories. Together, the SmartWool and Icebreaker brands create an advantaged position for VF as a leader in the growing and underpenetrated natural fiber category. We will have unmatched capabilities that will strengthen our ability to create innovative and sustainable natural fiber products across our brand portfolio, especially in VF’s outdoor and workwear brands.”

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