August 26, 1999
Fossil and Seiko Instruments Create New Firm
Fossil Inc., Richardson, TX, and Seiko Instruments America Inc. formed a joint venture company called SII Marketing International Inc. The new firm will manufacture and distribute Lorus brand watches in the U.S. King Co. of Austin, TX, formerly distributed Lorus.
SMI will also manufacture and distribute watches related to classic Disney characters, including Winnie the Pooh and others. The company will initially market these primarily to mass-market retailers in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe
"This new alliance between Fossil and Seiko combines the design, marketing and merchandising talents of Fossil with the manufacturing and sourcing capabilities of Seiko," says Mike Barnes, Fossil's executive vice president. Fossil holds a 20% equity interest in SMI and will perform certain marketing, design and merchandising services. Seiko Instruments America Inc. is division of Seiko separate from Seiko Corp. of America, which distributes Seiko and Pulsar watches in North America.
- by Michael Thompson