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Calvin Klein is an American luxury fashion house established in 1968. It specializes in leather, lifestyle accessories, home furnishings, perfumery, jewellery, watches and ready-to-wear. The company has substantial market share in retail and commercial lines as well haute couture garments.
The company was founded by designer Calvin Klein and his childhood friend, Barry K. Schwartz. The company is headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York City.
n 1968, Calvin Klein founded Calvin Klein Limited, a coat shop in the York Hotel in New York City, with $10,000. The first Calvin Klein collection was a line of "youthful, understated coats and dresses" featured at the New York City store Bonwit Teller.
In September 1969, Klein appeared on the cover of Vogue magazine.
The transaction between Calvin Klein and PVH was financially supported by Apax Partners Inc., a New York private equity firm, which is said to have made a $250 million equity investment in PVH convertible preferred stock, as well as a $125 million, two-year secured note, all in exchange for seats on the board of PVH.
CKI thus became a wholly owned subsidiary of PVH. In the beginning, Klein himself, who was included as a person in the 15-year contract he had signed with PVH, remained creative head of the collections but then continued as an advisor (consulting creative director) to the new company from 2003 on and has since been more withdrawn from the business. Barry K. Schwartz was said to concentrate on his role as chairman of the New York Racing Association, a horse-racing club. The current President and COO of the CKI division within PVH are Tom Murry, who had filled this position already before the acquisition.
Upon the acquisition of Calvin Klein, Phillips-Van Heusen announced plans of launching a new men's sportswear collection that rivals Ralph Lauren's collection. This line is produced by Van Heusen.
With the fall 2006 Collection runway presentations in New York City, CKI inaugurated an 8,600 sq ft (800 m2) showroom space that can seat up to 600 people on the ground floor of 205 West 39th Street, in Times Square South where Calvin Klein has been headquartered since 1978.
In a 2010 report, PVH, who manages the ready-to-wear activities, had estimated sales of €4.6 billion of Calvin Klein products.
In February 2013, Warnaco Group was acquired by PVH which united Calvin Klein formal, underwear, jeans and sportswear lines.
Like other fashion brands, Calvin Klein established a monogram: the "ck" emblem.
In 2004, the company bought the domain name CK.com. Calvin Klein is one of the few corporations worldwide to own a two letter domain name.
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