New Wave Group to Acquire Ahead

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New Wave Group AB, headquartered in Sweden but with significant interests in the United States, has entered into an agreement to acquire Ahead, the innovative and successful headwear and apparel company.

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“Ahead’s strong market position and brand visibility in the headwear category worldwide will be an excellent complement to our business components,” said Torsten Jansson, Managing Director and CEO of New Wave Group

New Wave Group AB, headquartered in Sweden but with significant interests in the United States, has entered into an agreement to acquire Ahead, the innovative and successful headwear and apparel company.

The addition of Ahead would further enhance the New Wave Group corporate portfolio, as the parent company of Cutter & Buck, Clique, Craft, Orrefors and Kosta Boda, among other brands. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2011 and is subject to customary closing conditions.

Ahead is best known for its premier headwear collections that feature original approaches to logo embroidery options. Founded in 1995, Ahead has been able to capitalize on the golf industry’s desire for high-quality graphics on headwear and an array of garments. Based in New Bedford, Mass., the company operates four distinct business units: Men’s Apparel, Ahead Headgear, the “Heavy Metal™” line of golf accessories and the “Kate Lord™ Collection” of women’s hats, apparel and accessories.

“Ahead’s strong market position and brand visibility in the headwear category worldwide will be an excellent complement to our business components,” said Torsten Jansson, Managing Director and CEO of New Wave Group. “Ahead has been recognized for revolutionizing headwear in the golf community.”

Ken Shwartz, CEO and founder of Ahead, commented, “We’re looking forward to being part of the New Wave family and having access to their extensive distribution network and exceptional product related resources world-wide.” He continued, “New Waves plans to utilize Ahead’s New Bedford facility and our dedicated staff to continue the vision we have been working so hard to achieve and in doing so, expand our decorating capabilities to benefit other New Wave brands.”

Kurt Salmon Capital Advisors acted as exclusive financial advisor to Ahead, Inc. in this transaction.

New Wave Group AB is engaged on the design, acquisition, and development of brands and products within the promotion, sports, gift and interior design sectors. It operates through three business areas:

  • The Corporate Promo business area is engaged in the supply of promotional products in both Europe and the United States.
  • The Sports and Leisure business area is engaged in the marketing of such sportswear brands, as Cutter & Buck, Craft, Seger and Speedo in both the Nordic countries and the United States.
  • The Gifts & Home Furnishings business area markets such brands, as Orrefors, Kosta Boda and Sagaform, as well as other brands established in 17 countries.

New Wave Group AB sales divisions are currently active in 20 countries throughout Europe, North America and Asia.

For additional information, access the New Wave web site at http://www.nwg.se.

This press release contains certain statements that may be deemed "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements that address activities, events or developments that we intend, expect, plan, project, believe or anticipate will or may occur in the future are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on certain assumptions and assessments made by us in light of our experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments. Our ability and timing to complete the acquisition may be affected by a number of factors, including the ability to satisfy conditions, the absence of a material change in their business and other factors. Our ability to successfully integrate and expand their operations following the acquisition will depend on national or global political, economic, business, market and other conditions.

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