Raptor Consumer Partners Invests in Women’s Apparel Manufacturer Nic + Zoe

Raptor Consumer Partners’ John Burns Joins Nic + Zoe’s Board of Directors

RCP Creative Agency, LIPMAN, Leads Development and Expansion Nic + Zoe Brand

Boston, MA, June 28, 2012 - Raptor Consumer Partners (“RCP”), a leading consumer-focused growth equity firm, announced today that it has made a minority investment in Nic + Zoe, a leading manufacturer of women’s apparel available in Nordstrom department stores as well as more than 800 specialty retailers nationwide.  RCP also announced that John Burns, Managing Director at RCP, has joined Nic + Zoe’s Board of Directors.  In conjunction with this investment, Nic + Zoe will leverage the marketing, branding, advertising, and design expertise of RCP’s creative agency, LIPMAN, to further develop and expand its brand presence.  The terms of Raptor Consumer Partner’s investment were not disclosed.

Andrew Spellman, Managing Director at Raptor Consumer Partners and Chief Executive Officer of LIPMAN, said, “We are pleased to partner with Nic + Zoe as this leading brand grows its already well-established footprint on a national scale.  RCP and LIPMAN look forward to leveraging our collective resources and expertise to build on the creative energy and growth momentum established by the Nic + Zoe team while continuing to deliver on the brand’s mission of providing high-quality, multi-occasion clothing for style-driven women.”   

Founded in 2005 by Kent Spellman, Dorian Lightbown and Jane Dunning, Nic + Zoe bears the namesake of Creative Director Dorian Lightbown’s two children, Nicholas and Zoe.  The brand has built a sizeable business catering to the underserved population of 35+ female shoppers seeking timeless apparel options.  Nic + Zoe’s contemporary line is known for its versatility, comfort, bold color and sophisticated prints.

“We offer contemporary clothing for fashion-engaged women, who seek high-quality clothing versatile enough for every occasion,” Kent Spellman said.  “I am excited about the future of Nic + Zoe with RCP and LIPMAN as our partners.  RCP has already found an exceptional CEO in Susie Mulder, who is the ideal executive to take this brand to the next level of retail distribution and profitability.  I am very confident that with the support of RCP and LIPMAN, Nic + Zoe will grow into a global brand.”

About Nic + Zoe
Since its launch in 2005, Nic + Zoe has established a strong reputation for appealing design and consistently delivers a modern, high quality line of clothing. Affectionately named after Founder and Creative Director Dorian Lightbrown's children, Nicholas and Zoe, the collection takes shape in a modern perspective with novelty designs that boast exceptional details and decidedly feminine touches.  Dorian artfully combines beautiful colors with neutrals to create easy, versatile pieces through her passion for knitwear, which is the very heart and soul of the collection.  Nic + Zoe is distributed in more than 800 specialty stores across the country and has strategic partnerships with department stores such as Nordstrom.

LIPMAN is in the business of building iconic brands. Founded in 1927, and lead by David Lipman, its visionary Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, and Michael Mendenhall (former CMO of Hewlett Packard among other large roles) the 100 person company has quietly built an impeccable and enviable reputation of excellence in branding, holistic marketing and creative work on iconic brands, and has current clients such as Lord & Taylor, LOFT, David Yurman, Canyons & Talisker Resorts, LVMH, Dior, Hudson’s Bay, Harry Winston, Yankee Candle, Vita Coco, Georg Jensen, Seven For All Mankind and Stuart Weitzman.

For more information, please visit www.lipman-nyc.com.

About Raptor Consumer Partners
Raptor Consumer Partners (“RCP”) is the consumer private equity arm of Raptor Capital Management LP and is led by James Pallotta, John Burns and Andrew Spellman.  RCP invests in emerging brands and seeks partner companies that have an out-sized potential for disrupting the marketplace. Partner companies include consumer-facing products, services or technologies that have a unique product offering or positioning, address unmet consumer needs, and have a clear path to accelerating growth.

For more information regarding Raptor Consumer Partners, please visit their website at www.raptorgroup.com.  

Nic + Zoe:
Stephanie Mollison
(508) 651-0000 ext. 160

Raptor Consumer Partners:
Jonathan Gasthalter/Christina Keiser
(212) 687-8080