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Korea’s CJ seals Vera Wang Asia deal

South Korean retail and industrial conglomerate CJ Group has signed an exclusive deal to develop lifestyle brands with US fashion designer Vera Wang.

The group’s TV shopping subsidiary, CJ O’Shopping, will start launching products this month, the first a lingerie brand Vera Wang Intimates.

That will be followed by Vera Wang Home, linen and homewares lines, in May before a broader roll-out of apparel, accessories and cosmetics in September, branded VW Vera Wang.

News reports from Korea say CJ hopes to generate US$366 million in sales of the branded lines during the next five years through Vera Wang Asia – not just from its TV shopping unit, but through department stores and other retail channels.

“Working with Vera Wang will take us to the global shopping company status with quality products and design competitiveness,” said Lee In-su, VP of the TV shopping channel.

Wang, best known for her bridal wear, was named Womenswear Designer of the Year in 2005 by the Council of Fashion Designers of America and has more recently broadened her focus to ready-to-wear ranges.

Born in New York to Shanghainese parents, she is a former figure skater and Olympian, before working as design director for Ralph Lauren, and opening her first store in New York in 1990.

In June 2012, opened her first Australian store, Vera Wang Bride in Sydney and her first Asian flagship Vera Wang Bridal Korea, in Seoul’s Cheongdam-dong neighbourhood.

CJ group has widespread business interests throughout Asia and beyond, including parent of Tous Le Jours retail bakery and cafe chains, and multiplex cinemas.


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