For those who practice yoga regularly – particularly sweat-inducing hot yoga – absorbent, nonslip towels that can be spread over slick yoga mats have become an attractive accessory.
El Segundo yoga mat maker Manduka LLC could not ignore the towels’ appeal, so the company last month acquired Santa Monica yoga towel maker Yogitoes LLC, making yoga towels more than 30 percent of its product line in the process.
Sky Meltzer, Manduka’s chief executive, declined to disclose how much the company paid for Yogitoes, but said the acquisition will give Manduka estimated 2013 annual revenue of about $20 million.
A key motivation behind the acquisition, he said, was access to a skidless technology Yogitoes had patented.
“Yogitoes built the market for the yoga mat towel,” he said. “Now, our customer can look forward to that skidless technology coming to life in more aspects of our accessories line.”
Manduka sells online and through about 3,000 stores worldwide, including big-box retailers such as Kent, Wash.-based outdoor chain Recreational Equipment Inc. and independent yoga studios.
Meltzer said the company plans to use its global influence to grow the Yogitoes brand outside the United States.
“There has not been a concerted international effort made for Yogitoes yet,” he said, “so that’s something we’re going to provide for the brand.”
Yogitoes founder Susan Nichols, who has known Meltzer for seven years, will continue to work with the Yogitoes brand for Manduka, leading design efforts. Manduka, which now employs 60 people, will keep both its El Segundo headquarters and Yogitoes’ Santa Monica office open.
Yogitoes’ standard mat-size towels, which retail online for $64, are made of absorbent microfiber with rubberized dots that “grip so you don’t slip.” The towels will be a premium brand for Manduka, which sells its eQua line of standard mat-size towels online for $42.
Nichols, who founded Yogitoes in 2003, said she was happy to hitch her brand to Manduka.
“Manduka is a natural fit to take us forward, while remaining true to our DNA,” she said.
Time Warner Cable earlier this month opened an interactive “experience store” on La Cienega Boulevard at the Beverly Connection retail complex, where customers can see product demonstrations and learn about the cable company’s services. … Casual L.A. restaurant chain Vegas Seafood Buffet has moved into an 8,400-square-foot space that can seat almost 350 people at Del Amo Fashion Center in Torrance. The restaurant – the third for the small chain – is in the outdoor portion of the mall neighboring burger restaurant Stacked. … Sweet Clementine’s Popsicles, which sells gourmet popsicles with flavors such as lemon buttermilk and mango chili, began selling its treats at Grand Central Market earlier this month. The popsicle stand is one of several vendors to open at the downtown L.A. marketplace this summer, including Thai eatery Sticky Rice and bakery Valerie Confections. At least four more eateries – DTLA Cheese, Oyster Gourmet, Egg Slut and Olio Pizzeria GCM – are expected to open in coming weeks. … Ventura natural market chain Lassens Natural Food & Vitamins has signed a 10-year lease at 1625 W. Sunset Blvd. in Echo Park. The 13,400-square-foot market will replace a Walgreens Co. pharmacy. … Culver City ice cream company Coolhaus, which got its start as a food truck known for its ice-cream sandwiches, opened a shop earlier this month in Old Pasadena. The 450-square-foot shop is the company’s second in Los Angeles. … Moroccan restaurant and lounge Acabar opened at 1510 N. Stanley Ave. in Hollywood earlier this month. … Parisian fragrance retailer Diptyque will open its first store in Los Angeles at 202 N. Larchmont Blvd. in November. The perfumer, known for its candles, will replace women’s clothing shop Fluxus.
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Rick Caruso’s retail real estate development company Caruso Affiliated has named Jackie Levy executive vice president of operations. Levy, who was promoted from senior vice president of operations, will oversee management of the company’s more than 2 million square feet in retail and residential assets, including shopping centers such as the Americana at Brand in Glendale and the Grove in the Fairfax district. The company also recently named Chris Brandon vice president of leasing, responsible for signing new retail tenants.
Staff reporter Bethany Firnhaber can be reached at email@example.com or (323) 549-5225, ext. 235.
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