By Carol Kim
PBN Staff Writer
WARWICK - Richline Group Inc., a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., announced an agreement in principle to acquire the Honora brand, the largest importer of freshwater cultured pearls in the United States.
Richline said it estimates a transaction completion date of July. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Joel Schechter, CEO of Honora, and Ralph Rossini, president, will continue running the company as a standalone brand that is within the Richline Brands division of Berkshire Hathaway.
“The entire Honora team takes great pride in the brand we have built over the years,” Rossini said in prepared remarks. “We look forward to utilizing Richline’s expertise and vast resources to expand our brand and strategic opportunities.”
Richline Group President Dave Meleski said that “a key goal of this acquisition is the utilization of our financial support and collaboration to fully champion Honora, as a brand, for domestic and international growth.”
Meleski added that the acquisition “expands our product assortment positioning as a dominate player in the pearl jewelry category.”
Earlier this year Richline Group also acquired Rio Grande, an Albuquerque, N.M.-based jewelry-industry brand. Formed in 2007, Richline Group Inc. is a fine jewelry manufacturer and marketer whose major brands include Rio Grande, LeachGarner and Richline Brands.
“We are tremendously excited about our future as a member of the Richline Group, and look forward to leveraging their tremendous strengths as we continue growing the Honora brand to consumers,” Honora CEO Joel Schechter said in a statement.