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Business briefs: Toyota to export cars to 18 countries

Toyota Motor Corp. announced Thursday it will begin exporting its U.S.-built Corolla sedans to 18 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean beginning in 2014.

The company, which is the world's largest automaker, said production of the export vehicles will begin in April.

The company said the new exports would build upon its all-time record of 124,000 U.S.-assembled vehicles exported 21 global markets during 2012. That record was an increase of 45 percent over the prior year.

Toyota has been expanding its U.S. manufacturing operations in recent years.

In August, the company announced a $90 million expansion at the company's Buffalo plant, which manufactures four-cylinder engines used in Corolla models.

Jim Lentz, chief executive of Toyota's North American Region, said the new export plans would further solidify the company's U.S. manufacturing base.

WVU included in apparel lines

West Virginia University is included in two new collegiate apparel lines being launched this fall.

Collegiate Licensing Company, an IMG College affiliate that handles university licensing, recently announced that Carhartt and G-III Starter will feature WVU-branded items as part of their outerwear clothing lines this year.

"Outerwear has been an underdeveloped product category in collegiate licensing and has extensive room for growth," said Joe Hutchinson, vice president of apparel management at the licensing company.

The Carhartt line, which is that company's first co-branded licensing deal, includes team logos and school colors on outerwear such as jackets, knit hats and overalls.  

They will be sold in farm and fleet distribution channels, Bass Pro and campus retailers, as well as Carhartt's website.

G-III Apparel Group, using the STARTER label, is using 14 schools to re-launch its original iconic team sports outerwear pieces.

The clothing items will be sold in high-end retailers such as sporting goods stores, department stores, and specialty stores and online on Fanatics. The product line will launch next month and pricing will range from $150 to $180.

Collegiate Licensing Company estimated the retail market for collegiate merchandise grew to $4.62 billion last year. The company represents 80 percent of the university properties in that market.

It said last month that WVU ranked 17th among its more than 200 schools in total revenue generated by licensed sales.




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