Bench, the British streetwear brand, has been sold to Wraith, the brand’s primary European licensee.
Gordon Brothers acquired the Bench brand and all its related intellectual property assets in July 2018. The focus was put on restructuring the business into a more asset-light – intellectual property-centric business model. As a result of these efforts, Gordon Brothers secured several new partners in categories as diverse as casual wear, handbags, gym equipment, and workwear.
Most critically, the brand’s positioning was overhauled to highlight the gritty Manchester skate culture of the 1990s. These efforts culminated in the brand’s physical return home to Manchester with the signing of Apparel Brands as one of its anchor licensees for Europe.
As the business developed, it became apparent that Apparel Brands Limited was the natural owner of the brand and ideally positioned to continue its growth.
“Gordon Brothers is extremely proud to have played its part in saving one of the world’s first streetwear brands of scale,” commented Ramez Toubassy, president of Brands for Gordon Brothers. He added, “By successfully bringing our asset-light business methodology to bear in this restructuring we were able to deliver a healthy business for Wraith to grow well into the future.”
“We are incredibly excited to be taking over the reins of the Bench brand outside of the Americas,” said Peter Wood, owner of Apparel Brands Limited. “With a vibrant portfolio of great partners throughout Europe and excellent awareness and customer affinity, we believe the potential for the brand is sky high,” he added.
Gordon Brothers’ Brands division values, acquire, restructures, and invests in underleveraged, distressed, or dormant intellectual property to help revive and reimagine some of the world’s most iconic brands.
Photo courtesy Bench