Official Pillotwex taps Platt to manage brands

NEW YORK – Official Pillowtex LLC, the consortium that acquired the assets of the now-defunct Pillowtex Corp., has hired Rick Platt as managing director to oversee brand management.

Platt, who was most recently senior vice president of retail sales at Sure Fit Inc., will serve as the liaison between the Official Pillowtex board and brand licensees. He will focus initially on the Royal Velvet and Cannon brands. His immediate task is to prioritize additional licensing agreements based on either the size of the unlicensed product category or its seasonality, he said.

"The opportunity to work with such a strong caliber of business partners is what attracted me to this new business opportunity," he said.

The Cannon brand has been licensed to Li & Fung USA for bedding, bath, kitchen and tabletop; Maples for bath rugs; Pacific Coast Feather for pillows, pads and natural fiber products; and Faribault for blankets. It is scheduled to reappear at retail in early 2006.

Royal Velvet has been licensed to Li & Fung USA for bedding, bath, kitchen and window, and Maples for bath rugs. The bath portion of the program will return to retail in early 2005 at Kohl's and some other yet-unnamed retailers. Additional product categories will begin hitting retail in the fall.

Brand management firm Earthbound will continue to oversee development of the Fieldcrest and Charisma brands, Platt said. Fieldcrest has been signed to Target as a captive house brand, and will roll out in spring 2005. Charisma last week was awarded to WestPoint Stevens for fashion bedding, basic bedding, bath, bath accessories and decorative pillows. It will begin shipping in late 2005.

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