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New owners breathe life into Basler

Collapsed German womenswear brand Basler is gearing up to relaunch in the UK.

The brand has produced an initial outerwear collection for autumn 18, which will be followed by a relaunch of its main line later in the year for spring 19.

It is understood to be working with London-based agency Genus Fashion, which is managed by Tim Ryan – previously UK head of wholesale for Basler from 2007 to 2011.

Basler’s UK arm appointed administrators in September 2017, after its German parent company went into liquidation.

At the time the brand had three own-brand stores in the UK – in London, Chichester and Epsom – a factory outlet in York, 17 concessions and more than 100 wholesale customers across the UK and Ireland.

Munich-based womenswear business TriStyle Group, which is owned by private equity firm Equistone Partners Europe, acquired the global rights to Basler in October 2017 for an undisclosed amount. TriStyle owns womenswear brands Peter Hahn and Madeleine Mode, as well as UK retailer Long Tall Sally. 

At the time of the acquisition, it said it would close Basler’s stores and focus on developing a new wholesale collection. 

TriStyle said the new outerwear range would retain Basler’s “well-known and distinctive style”. It will be shown for the first time at the CPD trade show in Düsseldorf at the end of January.

Meanwhile, UK-based fashion distributor Robert de Keyser has bought the Australian operations of Basler and plans to turn it into a multi-brand business.

De Keyser was the Australian agent for Basler from 1987 to 2014, and its UK and Irish agent from 2014 to 2015.

As part of the new deal, he has acquired enough product to trade Basler in Australia until the end of July 2018. 

He has agreed to operate five Basler concessions within department store group David Jones until the end of June, and bought Basler’s remaining six stores in the country. Basler does not wholesale in Australia. The Australian business has an annual turnover of AUS $7m (£4m), according to De Keyser.

Once the existing stock has been traded through, he intends to convert it into a multi-brand business.

He is currently the UK distributor for 11 mostly US and Canadian brands, including Conrad C, Novelti, Furious Fur and Edward Achour. He will introduce a selection of these brands to the Australian market through the six Basler stores, which will be renamed.

The stores will also stock Basler’s new outerwear collection.



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