Tomas Maier’s eponymous ready-to-wear label ceases operations
Tomas Maier has closed down his eponymous fashion label, launched in 1997 and initially specialising in swimwear and knitwear. In a brief press release, French luxury group Kering announced that “it is ending its partnership with the label, which is ceasing operations.” Kering acquired a stake in Tomas Maier in 2013, via a jointly owned company of which it was a major shareholder.
Tomas Maier broadened its product range over the years, turning into a modern luxury lifestyle brand. Details of its revenue were never disclosed. It operated four monobrand stores in the USA, and was available at some one hundred fashion retailers. According to US media, Tomas Maier’s annual revenue did not exceed $10 million.
The label has between 20 and 30 employees, and Kering stated that “in the next few months, [Kering] will make every effort to protect their jobs, coordinating with the label’s local employee representatives.”
The press release virtually coincided with Tomas Maier stepping down, less than a fortnight ago, from his role as Creative Director of Bottega Veneta, another Kering-owned label. Yet, his label’s senior management team had been bolstered recently.
The German designer, who formerly worked at Guy Laroche, Sonia Rykiel and Hermès, enabled Bottega Veneta’s business to grow well beyond the signature high-end plaited-leather handbag, its sales leaping from €50 million to €1 billion in 17 years. However, Bottega Veneta lately lost its impetus, and its revenue and profits were on the wane.
The decision to close down an elite label like Tomas Maier is consistent with Kering’s new strategy, seemingly focused on rationalising its assets to concentrate chiefly on the most profitable of the luxury labels in its portfolio, from Gucci to Saint Laurent and Balenciaga. In the last few months, Kering sold the stake it held in Puma, then its stake in Stella McCartney’s fashion label, and recently announced it is negotiating the sale of its share in Christopher Kane too.
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