Confirmed: PPR buys majority stake in Christopher Kane
It has been confirmed! Luxury fashion company PPR has bought a 51 percent stake in Christopher Kane.After weeks of speculation, WWD announced the news overnight, reporting that the French group "plans to seize on the Scottish designer's notoriety and creative prowess to accelerate expansion and develop his business as a global luxury brand."
PPR intends to open Kane's first freestanding store, believed to be in London, in 2014. There is also a second ready-to-wear line set to join the Scottish designer's fashion label.
"In just a few years, he has built a very distinctive and exciting brand with a unique DNA," said François-Henri Pinault, chairman and chief executive officer of PPR. "Christopher Kane is already established as a luxury label and has a tremendous intrinsic growth potential. We thus have great ambitions for the brand and will enable it to benefit from our expertise and know-how, while providing the space for it to further develop its own creative identity."
News of a deal first broke at the end of November, around the same time that he was rumoured to be in line for the top job at Balenciaga. Those whispers ultimately turned out to be false with Alexander Wang named creative director at the fashion house.
PPR has a history of building brands so they reach a global scale, which could potentially see Kane hitting similar heights to Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen, who are also part of the PPR family. Also the timing seems right for Kane, who recently finished up his three-year partnership with Donatella Versace on their Versus line.
Speaking of the deal and how it will impact his business, whom he manages with his sister Tammy, Kane said: "PPR understands and appreciates our creative independence, but at the same time has the experience and expertise to be able to help us grow our business globally. We have had a number of approaches, but after lengthy discussions it was clear that PPR is the partner for us. PPR felt like the most natural fit."
He was also quick to note that despite the mention of a second ready-to-wear collection, there were no immediate plans to make any major changes to the way the company is managed. "All growth will be gradual and organic," he added.
Exciting times at Kane headquarters!