Gramicci Hires Director Of Design: James Sowins and Paul Cronin Moves

Gramicci, developer of Natural Performance Technology ™ (NPT) outdoor clothing, hires design expert, James Sowins as Director of Design. Mr. Paul Cronin has also been hired as the US VP Vice President Sales Director, managing world-wide.
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For Immediate Release

Gramicci Hires Director Of Design: James Sowins and
Paul Cronin Moves to VP Sales Director World-Wide

AGOURA HILLS, Calif., November 22, 2010 — Gramicci, developer of Natural Performance Technology ™ (NPT) outdoor clothing, hires design industry expert, Mr. James Sowins as Director of Design. Both men's and women's design teams along with the technical design team will report directly to Mr. Sowins. Mr. Paul Cronin has also been hired as the US VP Vice President Sales Director, managing all US and International sales groups.

Recent sales numbers at Gramicci have exceeded forecasts, put in place when Marty Weening, President, and Paul Buxbaum took over in 2006. Today Gramicci is a licensed brand of the Haggar Corporation. The company has moved to expanded offices to accommodate new facilities and an expanding staff.

James Sowins has been hired as Director of Design and will bring new technical programs and further refine Gramicci's Natural Performance Technology â„¢ (NPT) collection. Sowins is an award winning designer, having worked with Kitson Apparel as the Chief Merchandising Officer Apparel, and most recently Vice President and Creative Director of The LBH Group.

Sowins is an accomplished surfer, beach volleyball player, master road and mountain bike racer. This, combined with award wining design portfolio, make him ideally suited to take Gramicci to the next level. His awards include a nomination for “Contemporary Designer of the Year,” Dallas Fashion Awards, named the “Stylist” by Vibe Magazine, named one of the “Fresh Faces of Fashion” by GENART USA, and four nominations for the “Marty Award” as California designer of the year.

Early in his career Sowins was instrumental in developing Mossimo into a lifestyle brand as V.P. Design Director. Later Sowins became Director of Apparel, World-Wide, for Puma, where he re-defined the brand. At Sketchers-Kitson as Chief Merchandising Officer Apparel Sowins concentrated on designing the Kitson line of jeans and organizing distribution in the UK and Middle East. Most recently, Sowins was Vice President, Creative Director at The LBH Group where he dramatically increased sales over a three-year period.

“I am very excited to be reunited with Marty Weening, I believe Gramicci has an amazing heritage. Our goal will be to reaffirm that authenticity with innovative product and marketing that leads the industry.” Director of Design, James Sowins.

“I have known James for over 18 years, he is a consummate professional and a highly accomplished designer and brand developer. His experience and world-wide perspective are most welcome.” President, Marty Weening.

In addition, Gramicci has promoted Paul Cronin, to VP Director of Sales World-Wide. Cronin brings a combined 23-year experience in sales and apparel merchandising. Previous sales executive leadership includes: Vice President, Marithe' & François Girbaud, Vice President Sales, Ecko Unlimited/Marc Ecko Enterprises, Corporate Merchandise Manager Menswear at Macy's Merchandising Group, and Vice President Sales Perry Ellis. At Gramicci, Cronin will oversee all domestic and international accounts.

“My goals for Gramicci include being a leading contributing factor to the very talented team already in place and grow the Gramicci brand to the dominance in the marketplace it deserves. ‘It's time to start living the life you've imagined,' Henry James,' explains US VP Sales Director, Paul Cronin.

President, Marty Weening, comments on Paul's strengths, “Paul has an invaluable understanding how to help our retailers address the challenges they face day in day out, he has been there and therefore he understands the importance of nurturing deeper relationships with retailers. ”

Gramicci continues to succeed in challenging economic times with eco-consciously sourced clothing, timeless comfort and “funktional” styling. James Sowins and Paul Cronin will further add to the expertise at the Gramicci team.

About Gramicci
Gramicci continues its commitment to greener manufacturing. It is developing and adopting new standards of manufacturing that substantially reduce its impact on the environment using less water and energy. Sixty-five percent of its offerings are made of materials that are pesticide free, organic or blends of recycled and organic fabrics. These products have received full certification from GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), OE Blended (Organic Exchange for blended fabrics) and OE 100 (Organic Exchange for all organic fabrics). Gramicci is also a fair labor manufacturer assuring fair wages, clean work environments and zero-tolerance child labor policies.

Gramicci, is often called the ‘soul brand' of the outdoor industry. Known in the climbing community as the originator of the iconic G-climbing pant and short 28 years ago, Gramicci is again originating with its introduction NPT- Natural Performance Technology, an all pesticide free, organic and hemp blend of high performance apparel. Renowned for its fabric innovation and engineered comfort designs it is also sought after for its perfectly imperfect, worn and weathered look of a favorite in the wardrobe. For more information, visit: www.gramicci.com.

Media Contacts:
Beth Cochran, What's Up PR (406) 579-7909, cochran@whatsuppr.com

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