New York—Sears and Kmart are hoping juniors will go bonkers for Bongo. Iconix Brand Group announced Tuesday a long-term agreement with Sears Holdings, giving the two retailers exclusives to Bongo apparel, accessories and other lifestyle related categories starting this fall.
The Bongo brand, which gained fame in the 1980s with its body-hugging jeans, evolved into a lifestyle junior brand that includes apparel, footwear, jewelry and other accessories. Along with announcing that the two retailers will carry the Bongo brand in their stores and websites, Iconix introduced the “new face” of the brand: Audrina Patridge, reality star from MTV’s The Hills.
Patridge will be following in the footsteps of previous “Bongo girls” such as Kim Kardashian, Nicole Richie, Kristin Cavallari and Rachel Bilson.
“I am thrilled to be working with Bongo as the brand is being re-launched at Sears and Kmart this fall!” said the 25-year-old reality star who coincidentally will premiere in her own TV show this fall. “Generations of women, including my mom and sisters, have loved this iconic brand, and it’s exciting to be a part of something that is so classically cool, American.”
In addition to being featured in the national ad campaign in fashion and lifestyle magazines, Patridge will be modeling the Bongo collection in marketing collateral, point of sale signage, outdoor advertising and at www.bongo.com . She also will be making personal appearances and even hosting a launch party for Bongo.
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“In keeping with its young, hot-in-Hollywood history of spokespeople, Audrina was a natural fit for the Bongo brand, says Dari Marder, chief marketing officer for Iconix. “She lives that glamorous, adventurous lifestyle that our Bongo customers are fascinated with. And, it doesn’t hurt that she looks amazing in our jeans.”
The Bongo deal marks Iconix’ 19th “direct-to-retail” license agreements and its third direct-to-retail agreement with Sears (others include Joe Boxer and Cannon)
Iconix already plans other high profile license launches this fall with retailers, including Madonna and her daughter’s Material Girl for Macy’s, Britany Spears for Candies at Kohl’s, and Op brand for Walmart featuring actress Jessica Szohr of the CW’s Gossip Girl, R&B singer Cassie, actors Dianna Agron and Cory Monteith of the Fox hit show Glee and actor Trevor Donovan of the CW’s 90210.