The Courier-Mail

QUIKSILVER STRUGGLING TO KEEP AFLOAT

- JANE HARPER

STRUGGLING surf group Quiksilver is reportedly seeking a buyer to help keep its head above water.

The chain, which was founded in Torquay on Victoria’s coast, has floundered on the back of disappoint­ing sales.

Quiksilver, which is now based in California and listed on the US stock exchange, is understood to have been holding talks with potential buyers.

The brand rode high on a surfer and skateboard­ing craze in the 1990s and early 2000s, and sponsored big name players including Tony Hawk and Kelly Slater. A move away from surfer fashion and rapid expansion saw the company struggle to compete with fast-fashion giants such as H&M.

Last year the chain suffered a 13 per cent drop in sales, and chalked up a net loss of $US309.4 million ($442.6 million).

Until recently it was a similar story with its rival Gold Coast-based Billabong.

Last week Billabong reported its first return to profit since 2011. The company chalked up a net profit of $4.2 million for the year to June, bouncing back from a $233.7 million loss the previous year.

Billabong went through a major upheaval in 2013 after being at the centre of a drawn-out takeover tussle that stretched on for 18 months.

But the group, which remains listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, said last week its strategy to focus on the core brands Billabong, Element and RVCA, and streamline its store network and supply chain, was paying off.

 ?? Picture: Tim Marsden ?? TOUGH ACT: Mick Fanning in action at the 2015 Quiksilver/Roxy Pro at Snapper Rocks.
Picture: Tim Marsden TOUGH ACT: Mick Fanning in action at the 2015 Quiksilver/Roxy Pro at Snapper Rocks.

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