Orange County Business Journal

New Details on Ex-Billabong Exec's Startups

Kari Hamanaka Friday, November 8, 2013

Paul Naudé, the former head of Irvine-based Billabong USA, is working on new apparel and eyewear lines.

VISSLA is a surf-inspired clothing brand, while D'BLANC is an eyewear and accessories line.

Both are expected to launch in March and are owned by Irvine-based Stokehouse Unlimited.

Naudé told action-sports industry publication Transworld Business that a third line, aimed at the juniors market is expected for 2015.

Naudé is the former president of Australia-based Billabong International Ltd.'s Americas business and had eyed a buyout of the action-sports apparel maker and retailer.

The Naudé-led consortium's $299 million offer was ultimately rejected in favor of a competing offer from a group that included Palo Alto private equity firm Altamont Capital Partners. That Altamont bid was later rejected as well, in favor of a competing offer from U.S. hedge funds Centerbridge Partners LP and Oaktree Capital Management LP.

Naudé resigned from Billabong International in August.