Mambo sold at a discount

Gazal Corporation has sold its street and surfwear label Mambo to a private equity group.

While the sale price was undisclosed, it is understood Mambo was sold to Equity and Capital Finance Australia for just over $10 million. Gazal paid double that when it acquired the brand in March 2000 from founders Dare Jennings and Andrew Rich.

Gazal MD, Michael Gazal, said the funds would go to paying off bank debt while the company focused on its other brands, including workwear brand Bisley, underwear brand Lovable and menswear label Van Heusen.

The private equity group said it intends to focus on the Mambo product, but it will also refurbish the eight shops included in the sale and expand the network locally and overseas.

Equity and Capital Finance Australia, which is made up of a consortium of Australian private investors led by Angus Kingsmill and Tony Woodward, has also acquired the wholesale distribution rights to surf shops here and overseas and to David Jones.

Kingsmill told The Australian newspaper that the main attraction was Mambo’s “heritage” and local and international potential. Recently the brand has struggled with remaining true to its youth market.

Supplying the Australian Olympic team with uniforms for the closing ceremony in Sydney 2000 was subsequently declared by co-founder Jennings to be a mistake because it made the brand too mainstream.

Kingsmill has told the media one of the first things he’d be doing would be to contact Mambo design creator and Mental as Anything guitarist Reg Mombassa.


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