A partnership of the biggest U.S. mall owner, Simon Property Group, and apparel licensing firm Authentic Brands Group (ABG) has been tapped by a bankruptcy court as the winning bidder to acquire denim maker Lucky Brand for $140.1 million, reports CNBC. The two — in a venture known as Sparc — announced last week that they’re set to assume the role of core licensee and operating partner for Lucky, overseeing all sourcing, product design and development, running all of the retailer’s stores in North America, and its e-commerce business. Sparc said it will negotiate with landlords to keep Lucky’s “key stores” open in North America.
Lucky Brand filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in early July. ABG, which has acquired a number of retailers over the years, including Barneys New York and Nine West, will own Lucky’s intellectual property and oversee all licensing partnerships, new business and brand development, a press release said. Sparc was also named the winning bidder for bankrupted men’s apparel retailer Brooks Brothers, in a $325 million deal to keep at least 125 Brooks Brothers stores open.