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Uncertain Future for Koret?

According to sources, Kellwood may be close to shutting its Koret business and the New York office.

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KORET’S FUTURE?: Could Kellwood be winding down its Koret business? According to sources, Kellwood may be close to shutting its Koret business and the New York office. Asked whether the division was closing and whether Linda Harrison, executive vice president of Koret, would be exiting the company, a Kellwood spokeswoman said, “Like all of our brands, we’re always evaluating our options on a regular basis. Linda Harrison is still employed by Kellwood and will remain with the organization through the end of the year.” The spokeswoman added that Kellwood hasn’t closed Koret’s New York office and they are still continuing to ship. However, sources said the company is not showing a Koret collection for May/June/July delivery.

Koret, which was founded in 1938 in San Francisco as a coordinated separates company, was acquired by Kellwood in 1999. Known for its casual women’s sportswear under the Koret, City Blues by Koret and Francisca by Koret labels, Koret sells stores such as Belk, Stage and Gottschalks. In recent years, Kellwood has taken on a more contemporary posture, acquiring such labels as Vince, Rebecca Taylor, Adam, and Scotch & Soda, as well as launching BLK DNM, designed by J. Lindeberg.