After months of speculation in the active lifestyle market about a pending deal in the beach/skate lifestyle space, Authentic Brands Group (Authentic) reported it signed an agreement to purchase Boardriders, the parent of Quiksilver, Billabong, Roxy, DC Shoes, RVCA, Element, VonZipper, and Honolua. 

On March 31, Authentic said it entered a period of exclusivity and made a binding offer to purchase Boardriders. The terms of the deal were not disclosed; however, Moody’s reported on April 4 that the purchase price is approximately $1.25 billion.

Authentic described Boardriders “as a highly diversified global business with operations across continents, including the Americas, Europe, Australia and Asia.” 

The portfolio generates $2.9 billion in retail sales annually through a global multi-channel distribution network of 500-plus owned retail stores, 7000 wholesale accounts and e-commerce in 35 countries.

“We are thrilled to have completed the next phase of the Boardriders acquisition process,” said Jamie Salter, founder, chairman and CEO of Authentic. “The Boardriders brands are at the forefront of a growing consumer demand for authentic brand experiences, and we look forward to working with the management team to further unlock each brand’s rich heritage and reinforce their positions as leading consumer brands worldwide.”

In keeping with its brand-building approach, Authentic reported it plans to leverage its global network of operating partners to convert the Boardriders business into a licensed business model. The company is in discussions with operators in key regions to manage the manufacturing, retail, e-commerce and wholesale operations of the Boardriders business.

Authentic sees significant opportunities to accelerate the worldwide expansion of the portfolio’s branded shop-in-shops, retail stores, e-commerce, wholesale distribution, and to establish a Boardriders online platform.

“We are pleased to find a great home for Boardriders in Authentic, one of the world’s premier brand owners and marketing platforms,” said Arne Arens, CEO of Boardriders. “Our brands and business have strong equity and an established and profitable organic growth strategy in place. We are confident that Authentic will bring the expertise and resources required to drive the next phase of Boardriders’ journey.”

The acquisition is subject to standard closing conditions, including regulatory approval, and should finalize in the third quarter of 2023.

Authentics’s brand portfolio includes Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Muhammad Ali, Shaquille O’Neal, David Beckham, Dr. J, Greg Norman, Neil Lane, Thalia, Sports Illustrated, Reebok, Eddie Bauer, Spyder, Volcom, Shark, Tretorn, Prince, Airwalk, Nautica, Izod, Brooks Brothers, Barneys New York, Judith Leiber, Ted Baker, Hervé Léger, Frye, Juicy Couture, Vince Camuto, Lucky Brand, Aéropostale, Forever 21, Nine West, Jones New York, Van Heusen, Arrow, Hickey Freeman, Hart Schaffner Marx, and Thomasville. 

Authentic’s brands generate approximately $24.7 billion in global annual retail sales, with an expansive retail footprint in over 150 countries, including 10,800-plus freestanding stores, shop-in-shops and 380,000 points of sale.

Photo courtesy Boardriders