Gill, the UK-based brand of technical sailing clothing, has announced that its British parent company has acquired Gill North America Ltd. The acquisition is part of Gill’s ambitious growth strategy, developed since the company was purchased from Nick Gill by YFM Equity Partners in late 2013.
The move is also part of the wider plans designed to strengthen its brand position in the marine apparel market and continue the significant growth seen in 2017.
Gill North America Ltd is a leading marine brand in the US, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean, with annual revenues in excess of US$8m. The deal will see the company's combined annual turnover increase to more than £20m, with the US making up 33% of the Gill worldwide portfolio.
Gill North America Ltd previously operated independently under a distribution agreement but will now be an integrated part of the Gill global brand, delivering benefits through expansive markets, new product development, cost synergies, centralised digital platforms, shared operations and customer service.
Commenting on the acquisition, Gill’s CEO Jamie Tunnicliffe says: “Gill grew 15% in 2017 and has ambitions for further growth and to strengthen our position as the leading marine apparel brand around the world. The acquisition of Gill North America was an important step in this strategy and we are delighted to have finalized a deal which benefits our customers, stakeholders and staff.
“With this brand consolidation, turnover growth will now exceed £20m in 2018 and we can ensure that we have a consistent brand message and product offering across the world. In conjunction with our partners, Gill now has a global presence with market leading positions in the UK, Europe, the US and Australasia.”
David Pritchard, who will continue as senior vice president of Gill North America, adds: “We are immensely proud of the success story of Gill in North America over the last 30 years as we have created the number one brand of choice for sailors, cruisers, anglers and water sports enthusiasts. Bringing Gill North America into the global company network will bring enhanced benefits for our US consumers, with extended product lines and an integrated digital platform, and will also safeguard 15 employee positions in the US.”
Gill manufactures a wide range of clothing and accessories which it exports to over 40 countries. Its product categories include Race, Performance and Active ranges that are well suited for use in a harsh marine environment.