The licensee for Biba, the iconic 1960s label which was relaunched just two years ago, has fallen into administration.
Biba was resurrected in 2006 at London Fashion Week under the charge of global licensee Michael Pearce, who is best known for bringing Ugg boots to the UK in the early 2000s.
However, Pearce’s company, Biba international, has appointed Grant Thornton as administrators. The reason for the difficulties is unclear.
According to industry sources, the brand got off to a slow start following its debut collection, which generated huge publicity, but sales began to gather momentum over the autumn 07 selling season.
Sources close to the situation said the brand owners, Hachel International Foundation, were committed to keeping the Biba name alive and would seek a new licensing deal either with Pearce or a third party. Several interested parties are thought to have contacted Grant Thornton about a rescue deal.
One industry veteran who has followed the brand’s rebirth said: “Biba means nothing to the youngsters of today and trying to recreate something is very difficult.”