SOURCE: Howe Denim

July 05, 2005 07:00 ET

Howe Announces the Appointment of Eric Wical as GM

HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 5, 2005 -- Eric Wical, denim industry veteran, has joined the Howe Denim staff as GM/Business Director/Product Development. In this newly created role, Wical will oversee Howe's operations, sales, and product development divisions with the goal of growing sales and expanding on Howe's current domestic and overseas retail programs.

Wical has more than 25 successful years of high-level executive experience with both retail and wholesale brands such as Merry-Go-Round, Abercrombie & Fitch, Calvin Klein, Club Monaco, Nike and Paige Denim under his belt. As a senior merchandiser for Abercrombie & Fitch in the mid-1990s, he initiated and executed the relaunch of their men's denim and casual bottom business. He later achieved revenue increases as both VP of Product Development at Calvin Klein Jeans and in 2001 as Business Director of Nike US Apparel. Before joining Howe, Wical helped guide Paige Premium Denim to over $6 million in sales at their industry trade show launch.

"We are really excited to bring Eric Wical on to our executive management team. He is going to be instrumental in implementing Howe's growth plans we have set. He has a solid reputation in the men's business and brings with him great premium denim experience and will be in charge of running our day-to-day operations," says Per Welinder, CEO of Blitz Distribution, Howe's parent company.

In addition to his strong denim background, Wical combines a trend-savvy knack for streamlining a company's product mix with a GMM's feel for navigating retail relationships. In his short time at Howe his impact has already been remarkable and he has given the Howe brand a laser sharp focus in a very competitive marketplace.

"I see Howe as special brand poised for incredible growth -- that combined with the explosion of the premium menswear market makes it extremely exciting. I jumped at the opportunity," says Wical.

About Howe Premium Denim

FOUNDERS: Per Welinder and Jade Howe

Created in 2001 by former Quiksilver designer Jade Howe, Howe Denim blends European fashion trends and fabrications with an aesthetic that Howe calls 'cowboy punk meets English country gentleman.' The line includes premium slim-fit denim jeans, nondenim bottoms, sophisticated printed wovens, tailored blazers, innovative graphics, sweaters, T-shirts, belts, scarves and other accessories. The line, which combines West-Coast alternative-music lifestyle influences with an English tailoring feel, has won raves for its strong, original graphics, treatments and details. The designer describes his consumer audience as, "The Indie Executive," the new breed of entrepreneurial man who is independent, style-conscious, creative, globally minded, and career savvy. Howe is a favorite of fashion-forward media personalities including Mars Volta, "Desperate Housewives'" Jesse Metcalfe, Tony Hawk, The Rock, C-minus, Weezer, Queens of the Stone Age, Radiohead, Hoobastank, Linkin Park, Franz Ferdinand, Orgy, and Eighteen Visions. 'Howe Homme,' the company's first free-standing retail concept located in Santa Ana, CA, opened in November 2004. Howe Denim is sold in better specialty boutiques and department stores in the U.S., Europe, Canada, and Japan. Howe is a division of Blitz Distribution, located in Huntington Beach, CA.


Howe's upcoming collection can be seen at The Project Show NYC, July 17-19. To make an appointment please contact BPMW at 212-206-8310 or email:

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