Belgian designer, Dries Van Noten, just sold a major stake of his eponymous brand to Puig, the Barcelona fashion, and fragrance company. Reports state that Van Noten shall continue as the main creative officer of the brand as well as chairman of the board. The designer will also continue to hold a minority of his company’s share.

Marc Puig, the chairman and CEO of the Barcelona brand, commented on this no venture for his company; stating: “We are beyond excited to partner with Dries Van Noten and his team. We look forward to further developing the Dries Van Noten label, a brand renowned for its exceptional creativity.”

Van Noten is known for mixing together bright prints in colorful and eccentric designs. Even with such a reputation, it is rather notable that the brand does not do haute couture, most of the pieces we see on the runway are ready to wear. In a 2005 interview with the New York Times, the designer said: “I’m a little naïve but I don’t like the idea of showing things that you don’t sell in a store.”

According to a recent article by the New York Times, Van Noten was “an original member of the Antwerp Six”, an artistic group of Belgians who imbued the city with avant-garde flair in the 1980s. His brand certainly does not lack popularity despite having only eight directly-associated stores, as Dries Van Noten is sold at 400 locations all over the world.

Van Noten’s designs are notably sported by the likes of Cate Blanchett and Belgium’s own Queen Mathilde.

Dries Van Noten was among the last independent brands within the fashion industry. In today’s industry which is defined by the global marketplace, most individually owned brands have to compete with larger conglomerates such as Kering and LVMH. Van Noten’s decision is simply the newest in a long line of predecessor’s who have also united with a larger company.

Puig further described his excitement over the merger, saying: “As an independent house, Dries Noten has, over the years, built an exceptional reputation with its avant-garde fashion collections. Our entry into the capital structure of Dries Van Noten proves yet again our strategic commitment to developing the Puig fashion business. Today we are proud to welcome Dries Van Noten to our fashion family, alongside Carolina Herrera, Jean Paul Gautier, Nina Ricci and Paco Rabanne.”

Van Noten himself commented on this new move for his brand, noting: “I am delighted that we are beginning a new chapter of the Dries Van Noten company and my work as a designer alongside Puig, a team that I have come to know and a company that I have always greatly respected. I am looking forward to their commitment and support.” Van Noten continued, saying “I have been searching for a strong partner for my company which I have built for more than thirty years. I am especially happy that Antwerp and my team will remain at the company’s heart and center.”

Featured Image via Wikimedia Commons

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