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Aditya Birla in talks to acquire Virat Kohli’s Wrogn brand

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Wrogn sells fashion apparel, footwear and accessories for men inspired by cricketer Virat Kohli

New Delhi: Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Ltd. (ABFRL) is in talks with Universal Sportsbiz Pvt. Ltd. (USPL) to acquire Wrogn, a casual brand co-created by cricket icon Virat Kohli, according to two people familiar with the matter.

“The talks with Aditya Birla are in advance stages,” said one of the persons asking not to be named.  The second person said USPL has been trying to find a buyer for Wrogn for some time now and the Bengaluru-based company had held talks with fantasy games platform Dream11 and Mukesh Bansal, the founder of Myntra. He said the talks are now moving forward with ABFRL.

ABFRL did not respond to an email (sent on Monday) seeking comment.

USPL was founded in 2012 as a celebrity fashion lines company by entrepreneur Anjana Reddy and reportedly had investments from Sachin Tendulkar. Reddy did not respond to phone calls and WhatsApp messages. Nishant Poddar, chief marketing officer and head of retail experience for Wrogn also did not respond to calls and WhatsApp messages.

Wrogn sells fashion apparels, footwear and accessories for men and the company said the products are inspired by Kohli.

“Wrogn was co-created with Virat Kohli, India’s cricketing hero and among the world’s biggest sporting icons. With its breakaway youth fashion and razor-sharp attitude, Wrogn has become a mainstay in the wardrobe of young Indian men,” according to Wrogn’s website.

Wrogn-branded T-shirts are priced at Rs 499 and above and the prices of jeans start from Rs 1,124, according to its webstore.

USPL brands including Wrogn and Single are retailed at over 350 points of sale with a geographical spread across 144 cities nationally, according to a recent company press release.

The brands are also sold at Shoppers Stop, Pantaloons and other department chains. They are also available online through e-commerce marketplaces including Myntra, Flipkart and the company webstore

USPL also operates exclusive brand stores in more than 45 cities.

In May, The BSE-listed ABFRL announced it is acquiring a controlling 51% stake in TCNS Clothing, a listed company that owned women’s brands such as W, Elleven and Aurelia, for Rs1650 crore.

ABFRL is one of India’s largest retailers and it operates around 3,500 stores and sells its brands through over 28,500 multi-brand outlets with 6,515 points of sales in department stores across India.

ABFRL sells brands including Louis Philippe, Van Heusen, Allen Solly and Peter England and Pantaloons department store chain.

The retailer also sells a host of international brands including Ralph Lauren, Hackett London, Ted Baker, Fred Perry, Forever 21, American Eagle and Reebok.

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