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JD Sports offloads distribution subsidiary Focus Brands

By Rachel Douglass


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Ellesse brand campaign. Credits: Ellesse.

JD Sports has sold its design, sourcing and distribution subsidiary Focus Brands to Hela Apparel Holdings, as part of the Sri Lankan firm’s shift towards becoming a “fully vertically integrated service provider for the apparel sector”.

Focus Brands currently holds the exclusive licensing agreements for the design and distribution of a number of brands, such as Ellesse and Nautica, in the UK, EU and other markets.

As such, the subsidiary will form the basis of Hela’s new brand licensing division, which will first operate independently from its existing manufacturing business.

Hela will also now oversee Focus Brands’ six product showrooms located in London, Manchester, Berlin, Munich, Düsseldorf and Amsterdam, as well as its sourcing office in China.

In a release, A.R. Rasiah, chairman of Hela, said: “The addition of Focus Brands to the Hela Group is a watershed moment for us as an organisation.

“We see immense potential to build significant synergies with our existing manufacturing business, supported by the addition of a Focus Brands well-experienced team of over 200 who have a proven track record of successfully growing major apparel brands.

“We intend to leverage their renowned design, product development, marketing, and distribution capabilities to further elevate Hela’s offering to its existing customers across the industry.”

Focus Brands
JD Sports