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Kellwood Plays Catch-up With Destination Brands

Kellwood Co.'s DNA is in private label, which is why it's ironic that the surge of retailers' own brands has given the St. Louis firm such a hard time.

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"Relaunching O Oscar and Calvin Klein is an opportunity for them to prove they are a viable licensee, but relaunches of labels very rarely work. Once labels fail once, it's hard to resuscitate them a second time," Stephens said. "You have to be concerned by a portfolio like that, because you have to worry that when their contract is up, they may lose it. But they have been very forthright that they know their strategy has to evolve."

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