Wet Seal is a young
women's clothing retailer
headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California. It
carries moderately priced brand name and company-designed
apparel and accessories. The company was founded
in Newport Beach, California by Lorne Huycke in
1962 as "Lorne's." The "Wet Seal"
name comes from a comment Lorne Huycke made during
fashion show commenting
that a model wearing a bathing suit looked like
a "wet seal."
In 1995, Wet Seal acquired 237 Contempo Casuals
stores from the
Neiman Marcus Group.
Contempo Casuals would continue to use its own name
until 2001, when the remaining stores were converted
into Wet Seal stores. The company then launched
the Arden B. brand in November 1998 and changed
most of the remaining Contempo Casual names to Arden
B. As of
22, 2006, Wet Seal has 428 locations
in 48 states and Puerto Rico
The Wet Seal, Inc. and its subsidiaries operate
as a specialty retailer of apparel and accessory
items for women in the United States. It operates
two mall-based chains of retail stores under the
Wet Seal and Arden B brands. The company's Wet Seal
stores offer apparel and accessories for teenage
girls; and Arden B stores provide feminine, contemporary
collections of fashion separates and accessories.
It also operates Web-based stores, which include
www.wetseal.com that offers Wet Seal merchandise;
www.ardenb.com which offers Arden B apparel
and accessories. As of February 2, 2008, the company
operated 494 retail stores, including 399 Wet Seal
stores and 95 Arden B stores. The Wet Seal, Inc.
was founded in 1962 and is based in Foothill Ranch,
Wet Seal typically serves the same audience and
Forever 21, and