SMP BREATHES AGAIN 13.10.05
SMP will make its re-emergence on the shelves in November with its first range in two years. Backed by the muscle of clothing giant Gazal, SMP has signed an exclusive deal with City Beach (despite much speculation it was headed for department stores). Said SMP brand manager, Stuart Clarke, the choice was obvious: “We identified something with potential and something that was good for the local market.” And while refusing to disclose numbers, it’s safe to assume the flailing brand came at the right price. A number of factors could explain SMP’s meltdown 18 months ago (the label was plagued by production and delivery grief), but this time around Clarke says SMP will stick with the path it has previously followed to success – a focus on board sports: “We hope to compete against Volcom and MCD,” said Clarke. “And take a little market share from the big three.” The license, bought by Gazal, covers the Australian and New Zealand markets, with the brand set to employ entirely new staff and suffer little restraint from above. And what of former SMP staffers? Far from filling Centrelink queues, Kerry Fisher now works for DC, designer Blair Heath moved to Volcom, Shane Moran moved into event management, and Glenn Scott is a presenter on Freestyle/Lifestyle on Fox.