In early February, Capital Distribution, owner of Ezekiel clothing, Kastel shoes, and Blond outerwear, announced the licensing of its labels to Irvine, California-based Azita Corporation Manufacturing, LLC for domestic and international distribution.
Capital Distribution began with Ezekiel clothing by Vince De La Peña and Shane Lavoie in a Dana Point, California garage. The company later launched the Kastel brand of shoes, and Spare and Blond snowboard outerwear.
According to the company, it has grown more than 200 percent in the last two years and will have sales exceeding nine-million dollars this year. Capital expects to double its volume in the next eighteen to 24 months.
Although the company is experiencing huge growth, there are pressures. “Every department had a burden of finances,” says Royce Cansler, co-owner and sales manager. “That’ll be lifted with this deal.
“We’re not CFOs,” he continues. “We’ve gone as high as we could with the company as is. You’ve got to pick your battles. With loans you have to deal with high interest.”
“We’d hit the ceiling of what we could do with our own resources,” says Owner and Founder De La Peña. “After careful evaluation, it was obvious that to grow our labels with integrity and still be able to maintain total control of our direction, this was the logical solution and a win-win situation for both parties.”
“The brands of Capital Distribution are exploding, both domestically and abroad,” says Co-owner Lavoie. “In order to take advantage of the window of opportunity that exists for Ezekiel, Kastel, and Blond, we feel we must maximize our talents in the design and marketing of the product. Getting involved with Azita will allow us to focus on the product and relieve the operational and production aspects of our growing business,” says Lavoie, cofounder.
Under the terms of the arrangement, the owners of Capital Distribution will maintain total control of all product development and direction, including all aspects of marketing, merchandising, design, sales, and distribution.
In addition to the licensing arrangement, Azita will serve as the headquarters for the brands, handling all aspects of operations and product production.
In an unrelated move, the company has sold the Spare snowboard line. “We can cover a wider customer base with Blond than with both labels,” says De La Peña.
The owners are optimistic about the future of Capital. “We want to be what Billabong, Gotcha, and Quiksilver were in the 80s and early 90s,” says Cansler. Now with the support of Azita, the Capital management can concentrate on that goal.–John Stouffer