U.S.-based Columbia Sportswear Company has commenced its joint venture in China with Swire Resources Ltd.
The JV commenced on January 1, 2014, and is initially slated to last 20 years. Samson Wong was appointed president of the joint venture named Columbia Sportswear Commercial (Shanghai) Company and headquartered in Shanghai.
The joint venture inherits the broad distribution network established over the past nine years by Swire Resources, which has acted as Columbia's exclusive distributor in China since 2004. That network consists of 51 wholesale dealers that, at December 31, 2013, operated approximately 660 Columbia Sportswear retail locations and 47 Mountain Hardwear retail locations in 180 cities. In addition, the joint venture directly operates approximately 70 Columbia branded retail locations in seven Chinese cities.
To promote operational continuity, at commencement, the joint venture was staffed primarily by management, administrative and retail operations personnel who transferred from comparable roles they held at Swire Resources.
Reflecting Columbia's 60% ownership stake, the joint venture will be fully consolidated in Columbia Sportswear's operating results and financial position beginning with the first quarter of 2014.