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Roksanda Ilincic Sells Namesake Company to The Brand Group

The designer will remain creative director of Roksanda, the label she founded in 2005.

Roksanda Ilincic Sells Namesake Company to The Brand Group

Roksanda Fall 2024 Ready-to-Wear Collection at London Fashion Week

LONDON — Roksanda Ilincic has found a white knight in The Brand Group, TBG, which has purchased the fashion label she founded in 2005. Ilincic will remain creative director.

An announcement is expected Wednesday.

TBG describes itself as a global, consumer-driven brand development and operating business. It has offices in London and Hong Kong and says its aim is to grow “fashion and home brands on a global scale, with a proven track record of success across various disciplines.” 

The group’s chief executive officer and cofounder Damian Hopkins said he has long been an admirer of Roksanda and of the designer’s work. 

The acquisition, he added, will secure the future of the brand in its next chapter “while celebrating British luxury, and supporting the impact that British creativity can have on the global stage.”

The intention is to build Roksanda and reach new audiences “while maintaining loyal customers,” Hopkins added.

Hopkins is also a business partner of Savannah Miller, founder of the contemporary clothing brand Vivere. A manufacturing and supply chain expert, Hopkins has worked in retail for more than 25 years and specializes in building consumer and celebrity brands.

Before partnering with TBG, Ilincic had filed a notice of intent to appoint an administrator, which is similar to Chapter 11 in the U.S.

In a statement, Ilincic described TBG as a “valued partner at a time when Roksanda had been exploring new ways of operating in the existing luxury climate.”

She said TBG’s “experience and intention to champion British creativity makes them natural partners, and will help Roksanda maintain its position as a British luxury brand, nurture its existing loyal customer base, and support growth via new audiences.”

Business has been tough for London’s small, independent design labels in particular. The slowdown in luxury demand, the collapse of Matches earlier this year, and various debts incurred during the pandemic have all taken their toll. 

Roksanda Ilincic Sells Namesake Company to The Brand Group

Roksanda Ilincic at the Erdem show in September 2022 at the British Museum.

Designers including Christopher Kane, Julien Macdonald and Nicholas Kirkwood all shuttered their labels following the pandemic, which swung like a wrecking ball through fashion businesses here, forcing them to shut stores, repurpose stock and swallow canceled orders from wholesale clients. 

Post-lockdown, the swift rise in interest rates made the designer business even harder — and investors jittery.

It is understood the Roksanda business will continue as usual under TBG.

The label is a fixture at London Fashion Week and stockists include Net-a-porter, Mytheresa, Selfridges, Harrods, Liberty, Le Bon Marché and Harvey Nichols. Until recently she had a shop at 9 Mount Street in Mayfair.

Ilincic, who was born in Serbia, studied architecture and applied arts at college in Belgrade. She moved to London in the late 1990s to study for her MA at Central Saint Martins under professor Louise Wilson. 

There, she laid the foundations of her clothing and accessories business. She is best known for her dramatic, color-drenched silhouettes that draw inspiration from the worlds of art, dance and theater.

She has also taken part in the Great Britain campaign to promote British products and craftsmanship abroad. In 2022, Ilincic designed the costumes for Royal Ballet dancers performing in Valentino Zucchetti’s world premiere of “Prima” at the Royal Opera House.