Assembled Brands

Assembled Brands is a modern holding company transforming emerging design companies into enduring brands through resources that lower operating costs and increase revenue, allowing designers to focus on product above all else.

Assembled Brands gave me the tools necessary to grow and succeed on my own terms but within the context of a proven system and a network. From honing my brands and developing exclusive products to acquiring customers and growing revenue, the system is flexible and effective.

Vanessa Traina, Executive Creative Director, The Line

Assembled Brands allows each brand to focus on developing the most important attribute: a very distinct and precise aesthetic.

Domenico De Sole, Chairman, Tom Ford International and Sotheby’s

Assembled Brands instantly understood our business, where all the issues were, and which ones to solve first. They moved quickly to fund our production deposits, built us a new budget, benchmarked us across other brands in the AB portfolio, and carefully identified cost-saving opportunities that our investors loved.

Sabina Schlumberger, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Figue

Intimacy and refinement are important to me, and Assembled Brands understands the difference those qualities can make, both for a brand and for a customer. Developing and running KHAITE as part of AB connects me with expertise, information, and suppliers I may never have had access to on my own, and the network of stylists is a direct link to my customers and their feedback.

Catherine Holstein, Creative Director, KHAITE


The Line® is a modern and personal approach to retail. Guided by a distinctive point of view that prizes craftsmanship, versatility, and ease, it brings together carefully chosen products from established and emerging designers. These fashion, home, and beauty items are placed in context through inspiring editorial features and the intimate domestic interiors of The Apartments: The Line’s immersive stores in New York and Los Angeles.

Designed and developed by The Line, Tenfold is a source of adaptable elements that can be used daily and treasured for years to come. The concept debuted in October 2015 with Tenfold New York, a range of exquisite and enduring home goods, and expands into the realm of fashion with the May 2016 launch of Tenfold Los Angeles, a collection of cut-and-sew knitwear that takes a refined approach to the iconic t-shirt.

Protagonist® is a ready-to-wear collection that elevates the modern wardrobe. Distinguished by subtleties of form, fit, and fabrication, each piece is developed through a studio-based design process that gives classic style new relevance and character. This unique balance of restraint and distinction results in refined silhouettes that evolve from season to season and can be worn in a variety of ways, keeping the focus on the person who wears them.

Launching for fall 2016, KHAITE® is a women’s ready-to-wear collection that finds confidence in contrast: of masculine and feminine, strength and softness, structure and fluidity, classic and modern. Each piece proposes a fresh balance of opposing elements while embodying a signature sensuality and ease.

Assembled Brands

We are a community of executives and creatives who have launched award-winning brands and been recognized for our approach to product design and retailing. While building The Line, Protagonist, Tenfold, and Khaite, we identified the most painful and expensive parts of operating seamlessly across online and offline environments. Based on those pain-points and costs, we developed technical, financial, and operational resources to serve our partners. Our shared resources lower operating costs, increase revenue, and allow each brand creative to focus on product design above all else.

* Financial Planning and Data Analysis

Financial planning and data analysis training begins by reviewing our partners’ software systems, processes, tools and spreadsheets with our financial engineering team. We build and maintain a scalable system to streamline data collection, aggregation and presentation. This provides our partners with actionable, real-time information to effectively operate and grow their brand.

In addition, we partner with brands to analyze operations, reduce costs, and guide business decisions. Assembled Brands brings a full team—from CFO to staff accountants to train you and your team. At such a time you need capital in the form of equity or credit we are ready to provide all of our partners financing needs. Financial Planning and Data Analysis training is a requirement for companies seeking Capital.

* Distribution

Assembled Brands has built an effective distribution network delivering preeminent, enduring brands that epitomize a refined and intimate customer experience above all. Out of this experience, we have built Arcade, a software platform that electronically connects key parties in our ecosystem. Arcade enables select boutiques as well as fashion and home brands to sell a greater selection of merchandise at a lower cost. The Arcade platform services the global luxury client, allowing trusted style editors, stylists or sales associates at the world’s most celebrated boutiques to share inventory of coveted products and earn financial compensation from each transaction.

Brand and boutique members on Arcade directly connect to style editors who, in turn serve their clients. Customers benefit from access to an intra-company store transfer system of trusted brands. Through Arcade’s powerful, visual features, Stylists better serve their clients while maintaining the required intimacy and control.

* Capital

Assembled Brands provides strategic financing to emerging product design companies seeking to build enduring brands. We supply credit and equity to scale inventory and fund production, as well as make capital expenditures like building a showroom or store. Using our Financial Planning and Data Analysis resource is a prerequisite to receiving a credit and/or equity investment from Assembled Brands.


Assembled Brands is corporate in structure, but we are partners in mindset. Meet our leadership team:

* Colin Bartlett

Colin is Chief Technology Officer at Assembled Brands. He is responsible for delivering best in class technology solutions across the group. Previously he was the VP of Engineering at AppStack, a Google Ventures company, managing a distributed engineering team. He was also Partner and Senior Consultant at Xforty Technologies, a systems integrator and software engineering firm. An entrepreneur since childhood, Colin studied Business and IT at Northeastern University before leaving to form Kinetic Web Solutions, a web development company in Philadelphia.

* Mike Cook

Before joining Assembled Brands in June 2015, he was a partner at SundanceBay Real Estate, a real estate private equity firm. Mike oversaw the firm’s expansion from a staff of six to more than seventy employees working across functions. Today, SundanceBay owns approximately 2,700 apartments with a total value of $170 million. Mike’s previous experience includes running his own residential and commercial real estate firm. He earned a B.A. from Claremont McKenna College and a master’s degree from Columbia University.

* Melanie Glass

As VP of Brand Partnerships for Assembled Brands, Melanie fosters strategic partnerships with promising brands across our industry. As Creative Director of The Line, Melanie played a central role in defining the aesthetic vision of The Line, designing our offline retail experience, and supporting the development and launch of both Protagonist and KHAITE. Before joining Assembled Brands, Melanie worked with brands such as Ralph Lauren, Prada, Marc Jacobs, J.Crew, and Cartier creating seasonal advertising campaigns, editorial content, and unique offline activations.

* Sharon Harsa

Sharon is the Executive Vice President of Finance and Operations for Assembled Brands. She has worked with a varied mix of esteemed brands and startup ventures in the fashion and beauty industries such as Hugo Boss and Reed Krakoff. Additionally, Sharon has been an executive consultant and acting CFO with numerous companies including La Perla, Ouidad and V&M (Vintage & Modern).

* Sam Hayes

Sam Hayes is the business unit GM of Arcade and serves as EVP Marketplace. He brings significant experience launching and growing entrepreneurial companies. Before joining Assembled Brands, Sam helped create leading marketplaces including in his role as a founding Senior Vice President at NASDAQ Private Market and founding COO and EVP, Marketplace of its predecessor SharesPost Financial. In these roles he successfully closed over 30 partnerships that resulted in $1B+ of transactional value, 85,000+ research downloads and 125,000+ market participants striking early deals with Bloomberg, Business Insider, Wedbush and U.S. Bank to win market leadership. Sam previously led corporate development for the Java platform at Sun Microsystems and business development for two venture-backed start-ups that are now part of market leaders Wine.com and Akamai. Sam received an MBA from Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business and an AB from Occidental College.

* Crystal Mangal

Crystal is the Director of Human Resources for Assembled Brands. Crystal brings over 8 years of leadership and people management experience having directed over 470 employees across the U.S. Crystal was instrumental in creating a balance between employee culture and business growth, helping to expand an elite fitness brand throughout the nation. Her knowledge in employee relations, professional development, training, talent acquisition, compensation, and benefits are instrumental in creating a strong foundation for Assembled Brands. Crystal holds a PHR from the Human Resources Certification Institute and a SHRM-CP from the Society of Human Resources Management.

* Adam Pritzker

Adam is the Chairman and CEO of Assembled Brands, a modern holding company. He is also Chairman and Co-Founder of General Assembly a global network of campuses providing educational and professional development training. For his entrepreneurial endeavors, Adam was featured in Forbes’ 30 Under 30, Vanity Fair’s The Next Establishment, Inc. Magazine’s 30 Under 30, and Business Insider’s Silicon Alley 100. Adam holds a BA from Columbia University where he studied Anthropology and Economics.

* Vanessa Traina

Vanessa is the Executive Creative Director of Assembled Brands. Drawing upon her extensive experience with global fashion houses such as Altuzarra and Balenciaga, Vanessa provides creative leadership across TheLine.com, The Apartments (physical showrooms), Protagonist and is responsible for sourcing brands, boutiques, and talent for the group. Applying her experience as a stylist for publications including The New York Times Style Magazine, WSJ Magazine, and i-D, Vanessa plays a critical role working alongside our brand marketing, brand partnerships and brand creative directors on development and merchandising.

* John Zdanowski

John is the Executive Vice-Chairman and CFO of Assembled Brands. John has acted as an advisor to, or as CFO of, a number of technology companies where he led or arranged numerous rounds of venture capital, private equity and debt financings, two initial public offerings, seven sales of secondary stock, fifteen acquisitions and the sale of four companies. John was notably CFO of Linden Lab, the makers of Second Life. He also worked as an investment banker and as a management consultant earlier in his career, and got his start as an engineer in GE’s management training program. John holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, an MS in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Syracuse University, and a BS in Electrical Engineering from Clarkson University.

Assembled Brands

The Internet is a two-faced phenomenon: a source of both incredible income growth and challenging complexity. This reality makes us more confident than ever that emerging product design companies have never had a more promising—nor a more challenging—environment in which to execute. The way we see it, fashion, home, and beauty companies in particular have more potential than ever, but face three major obstacles:

* No Data

Small brands have limited visibility into their own numbers. That’s because small product design companies often market and distribute via multiple channels, like department stores and other wholesale partners, which are out of your control. To make the situation worse, one channel sends you data in Excel spreadsheets, another sends you a PDF and so on. Consolidating all of your data into a unified, searchable database that anyone in the organization can use to visualize trends is critical, but extremely difficult and costly to develop. Our Financial Planning and Data Analysis training resource solves this problem.

* No Scale

Size matters. Large national retailers and large manufacturers get much more favorable deals with suppliers than small businesses do. Established brands have economies of scale, which they use to beat the little guys. Building niche networks at each stage of the supply chain can give small companies collective buying power that approaches that of large companies. Our Customer Acquisition and Distribution resources solve this problem.

* No Capital

Small businesses and brands need money to grow, but there is no good place to raise it. An annual growth rate of 10-20 percent is pretty healthy for a small business. But venture capital firms expect much higher growth rates over the lifetime of their investment, making them a poor fit for small fashion, home, and beauty companies. When small fashion businesses have access to the data and scale that Assembled Brands provides, they will grow and attract capital. Our Capital resource solves this problem.


How Small Brands Can Face Heavyweights

NEW YORK, United States — The Internet is a two-faced phenomenon: a source of both incredible income growth and challenging complexity. This reality makes me more confident than ever that emerging brands have never had a more promising—nor a more challenging—environment in which to execute. The way I see it, small fashion labels in particular have more potential than ever, but face three major obstacles:

Read the rest of the article here.

Can America Build Its Own LVMH?

On the second floor of a classic castiron building in SoHo, just above the madding crowd, there is an airy loft, all cool cream tones and Pierre Paulin chairs, oversize art books and Henri Cartier-Bresson prints. And along one wall is a rail of discreet white and black and marinière striped linen and silk, cotton and denim; culottes, shirtdresses, tunics and cashmeres. With price tags attached.

Read the rest of the article here.

A Pritzker Sets Out With Ideas of Empire

Adam Pritzker strolled through a spacious SoHo loft, pausing to admire a fake narwhal tusk. Handblown glass chandeliers from the Czech Republic dangled overhead, and vintage Moroccan rugs covered expansive hardwood floors.

The apartment, a minimalist luxury jewel box, was not Mr. Pritzker’s home, and the furnishings were not his own.

Read the rest of the article here.

Vanessa Traina joins Business of Fashion’s 500 list

A consultant and stylist whose clients include Joseph Altuzarra and Alexander Wang, Traina is also executive creative director of Assembled Brands and its curated lifestyle store The Line.

The daughter of American author Danielle Steel, Traina grew up in San Francisco before moving to Malibu to attend Pepperdine University.

Read the rest of the article here.

Assembled Brands

Explore answers to the questions we receive most often. Have other inquiries? Contact us at hello@assembledbrands.com.

* How do you pick brands?

Assembled Brands is a community of executives and product designers. We recommend products we like to one another and try to contact the designer(s) so our community grows organically.

* Do you work exclusively with women’s ready-to-wear and homegoods brands?

At this time, we are focused on building enduring brands in the fashion, home, and beauty spaces.

* Do all of the brands you work with share the aesthetic of The Line, Protagonist, and KHAITE?

We welcome many points-of-view.

* What if I am only interested in one of the resources you offer?

With the exception of Capital, which also requires Financial Planning and Data Analysis training, our resources are offered à la carte.

* In providing capital, do you always take a majority stake in the brand?

Not necessarily. We are open to participating in a variety of capital structures based on what is the best fit for the brand.

* I’m seeking help in building a direct-to-consumer website. Do you do that?

We provide recommendations for off-the-shelf solutions so our partners don’t have to reinvent the wheel; we also have vendors who can get your site up and running quickly using such solutions. With that said, we believe Financial Planning and Data Analysis, Customer Acquisition, and Distribution are far more important than a website to successfully building your brand’s direct-to-consumer business.

* What do you charge for your shared resources?

We charge differently for each resource. To learn more, please contact hello@assembledbrands.com.


Editorial Storytelling: T by Alexander Wang on The Line
Content and Commerce: Charlotte Perriand on The Line
Style in Context: The Apartment by The Line in New York
Style in Context: The Apartment by The Line in Los Angeles
Protagonist: Collection No. 10 (Fall 2017)
KHAITE: The Feminine Unique

Assembled Brands

November 1, 2016 —

Decoded Fashion Summit. Executives from Assembled Brands, Neiman Marcus, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, and Brickwork discussed “Seducing the Customer Back to Bricks and Mortar.”

December 7, 2016 —

Building Enduring Brands for the 21st Century. Guests gathered at New York’s Ludlow House for a panel discussion with Assembled Brands leaders moderated by Domenico De Sole.

December 16, 2016 —

Holiday Party. A seasonal celebration at The Apartment by The Line in New York hosted by Dakota Fanning, Gabriela Hearst, and Vanessa Traina.

February 22, 2017 —

Dinner with Assembled Brands. The first in a series of dinner discussions to introduce the unique resources of AB to emerging and established designers.

Assembled Brands

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