Friday, December 8, 2023

Investors Eyeing No. 21, Sources Say

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MILAN — According to Milan-based sources, two suitors are interested in investing in Alessandro Dell’Acqua’s No. 21 brand.

A dossier is said to be circulating here and a source said Italian fashion manufacturer Gilmar, which already has a 30 percent stake in the brand, is one of the two parties, while the other is a foreign investor whose identity could not immediately be learned.

Reached for comment, No. 21 and Gilmar denied the speculation.

The first No. 21 women’s collection was shown in February 2010, while the first men’s show was held at Pitti Uomo in January 2014.

In 2015, Italian fashion manufacturing company Gilmar, which produces the Iceberg line, acquired the minority stake in 2112 Srl, the company operating the No. 21 label.

The brand’s founder and creative director Alessandro Dell’Acqua, who established the upper contemporary firm in 2010, maintained a 70 percent majority stake in the company.

The operation marked an evolution in the relationship between the fashion brand and the manufacturing company, which is owned by the Gerani family that has been producing and distributing No. 21 since the spring 2013 collection.

The brand also offers a bag line and a footwear range, as well as a children’s line licensed to Brave Kid, owned by OTB.

Dell’Acqua started his career in 1995 with a knitwear line called AA Milano, which later morphed into his signature line. He launched No. 21 after losing the use of his name and creative control of that eponymous brand in 2009.

No. 21 is mainly distributed through the wholesale channel and is available at 450 doors, and there are flagships in Milan, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Hangzhou and Wuhan.

There are also nine shops-in-shop in South Korea in Seoul, Busan, Incheon, Cheonan and Deagu.

During his career, Dell’Acqua also designed for La Perla, Borbonese, Malo, Brioni and Les Copains, and created a one-off capsule collection for Tod’s. In 2019, he parted ways with Rochas, where he served as creative director for six years, following Marco Zanini in 2013.

In 2020, No. 21 and Tomorrow London formed a creative and business partnership spanning distribution, events, strategy and the mentorship of emerging talent.

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