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Macandi ramps up brand offer

Contemporary fashion agency Macandi is extending its branded offer in a bid to broaden its appeal to a wider range of retailers.

The London agency, which also represents contemporary clothing label Folk and footwear offshoot Shofolk, has taken on Gas Jeans, Napapijri, Closed, Kicking Mule Workshop, Finisterre, Red Dot, Vintage 55 and DIE for spring 09.

Macandi has moved from its previous location above the Folk flagship on Lamb’s Conduit Street in Bloomsbury, central London, to a new 3,500sq ft showroom that was previously home to Gas Jeans on Essex Road in Islington, north London.

"Our goal is to become the largest agency/distributor in the mid- to high-end contemporary market in the UK and Ireland," said Macandi’s managing director Fraser Shand. "Our business model is to offer a selection of brands that will appeal to different types of retailers, from the independent who wants to be first to break new brands, to those who only work with established names.

"We added a number of brands for spring 09 so that our stable now ranges from international clients like Gas Jeans, Vintage 55 and Napapijri, mid-sized and fast-growing brands such as Folk, Shofolk and Humanoid and newcomers such as Kicking Mule Workshop, BSA and Finisterre."

Sitting at the more commercial end of the market, Gas Jeans has the most mainstream appeal of Macandi’s brands, with the agency inheriting 40 accounts in the UK and Republic of Ireland.

"Gas has been in the right accounts from Selfridges to House of Fraser," said Shand. "The plan is to edit each 1,000-piece collection so it is relevant to our market. Demand at the moment is for jeans which wholesale from £45 to £60."

Performance fashion brand Napapijri, owned by VF Corporation, which also owns Lee Jeans and Wrangler, is another brand with strong awareness in the UK.

"In its heyday Napapijri had sales of £2 million in the UK. Now it has about £400,000, but there are big plans for the brand. The collection is getting a cleaner look and the brand is searching for a flagship store in London which it plans to open in 2010," said Shand.

Other brands new to the agency include contemporary German brand Closed, premium denim labels DIE and Kicking Mule Workshop and outdoor specialist Finisterre, which
won the award for Best Fashion and Accessories Brand at this year’s Observer Ethical Awards.

For more information call 020 7831 2844.

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