American Apparel Outlines Financials
In a preliminary release, Counselor Top 40 supplier American Apparel (asi/35297) has announced its total second-quarter revenues were flat, coming in at $162 million, according to a regulatory filing. The Los Angeles-based company also reported a net sales loss of $15 million, compared with a Q2 loss of $37.5 million a year earlier.
American Apparel said it would not be able to issue a full second-quarter earnings report yet, citing the turnover of its board of directors, which needed more time to review its financial statements.
Two months ago, American Apparel ousted its CEO and Founder Dov Charney – a native Canadian currently living in Los Angeles – due to allegations of misconduct, which included misusing company funds and acting inappropriately toward employees, particularly women. Hedge fund Standard General has since provided $25 million in financing and took a 44% ownership stake in the company. As part of that deal, Charney resigned his board position and four new board members were appointed. The most recent appointment was made this week when American Apparel announced Google executive Laura Lee was named one of the firm's seven directors. Currently, Lee heads East Coast content partnerships for Google/YouTube, involving TV, film and new media.
Meanwhile, Charney is serving as a paid consultant while fighting to regain his role as American Apparel's CEO. A special three-member committee will determine Charney's future with the clothing firm once a company investigation is complete.
Ranked by Counselor as the 14th largest supplier in the industry, American Apparel reported 2013 North American ad specialty sales of $99.2 million, a year-over-year increase of 2.5%.
Q2 Distributor Sales Increase 6.1%
Data released by ASI on August 12 shows that distributor sales grew by 6.1% in the second quarter of 2014, continuing a stretch of 18 consecutive quarterly gains. Meanwhile, the Counselor Confidence Index, a measure of distributor health, hit 113 in Q2 – just off last quarter's record number, and well above the baseline that indicates industry growth.
“It seems that businesses overall are bullish about the future and spending money,” said Greg Muzzillo, founder of Top 40 firm Proforma (asi/300094). “We were up over 10% in the quarter and we expect to finish the year up over 10% as well.”
More than half (57%) of distributors reported a year-over-year rise in second-quarter sales, the highest percentage of growing firms in two years. Small distributor firms (less than $250,000 in annual revenues) reported an average sales increase of 4.3%, an improvement from 2.4% in Q1. Mid-sized distributors ($250,000 to $1 million) averaged 3.6% growth, while large firms (more than $1 million) fared the best in Q2, recording a 7.8% sales rise on average.
“Our second quarter was quite consistent with the industry average,” said Dave Thompson, president of Top 40 distributor National Pen (asi/281040). “We believe growth is being driven by improved employment and a slight improvement in overall optimism.”
Distributors remain bullish about their overall sales for 2014, with 69% expecting an increase in revenues over last year. Eight in 10 large distributors are projecting a sales rise, with two-thirds of mid-sized and small companies also predicting a revenue jump. “We're anticipating 15% year-over-year growth,” said Jason Black, CEO of Top 40 distributor Boundless Network (asi/143717). “As for the industry going forward, I think margins will get tighter across the board, small distributors will continue to be scrappy, and larger distributors without technology or a strong value proposition will lose market share.”
Trimark Releases 2015 Collection
Trimark Sportswear Group (asi/92122) has launched its 2015 Collection of versatile new items, including 44 new styles. The supplier has released its Knew One ½-zip top constructed specifically for decoration, as well as 10 new retail-inspired jackets. Finally, the company is proud to offer inFusion decoration, a print with a super lightweight hand, vivid colors and high level of detail. Visit www.trimarkone.com and www.trimarksportswear.com/infusion for more information.
Enter the Wearables Top Decorator Competition
The Wearables Top Decorator competition for 2014 is hitting the home stretch. Sponsored by Hanes Branded Printwear (asi/59528), this competition will test the technical and creative skills of screen printers with a series of challenges throughout the year.
The challenge involves creating a "cool" shirt for a politician on the campaign trail using jumbo or oversize prints. The name of the politician (hypothetical or real) and imagery is up to your discretion. What else do you need to know?
Each month will be its own standalone challenge. If you don't participate one month, you are free to enter in the following month's challenge.
Anyone can enter. The competition is open to any company that offers screen printing.
There will be prizes. Each month's winner will receive a $200 Visa Gift Card courtesy of Hanes.
This is a competition. A combination of judges' marks and a popular vote by Wearables readers will help determine the winner of each challenge.
If you are interested in participating, contact Wearables Editor C.J. Mittica at email@example.com. Participants who sign up will receive further instructions and Hanes T-shirts to print on, courtesy of Hanes Branded Printwear. The postmark deadline for your printed submissions is Wednesday, August 20.
Debco Launches Ask Darcy
Debco (asi/48885) has launched Ask Darcy, an intuitive interface offered on its website alongside select technology products. Ask Darcy answers customers' specific technical questions in real time. Visit www.debcosolutions.com for more information.