Monogrammed luxury fashion startup The Daily Edited (tde.) has new owners, with the owners of budget fashion brand Colette by Colette Hayman (CBCH) taking over the brand from administrators KordaMentha.
Parent company BJM is owned and chaired by former Myer boss Bernie Brookes. The sale price was not disclosed.
Founded in 2014 by Perth-based former corporate lawyers Alyce Tran and Tania Liu, tde. became a cultural phenomenon, glittering with the celebrity brilliance of Lara Bingle and Hailey Baldwin. It has a flagship store in Sydney’s Queen Victoria Building, plus an online store and purchase through its social media platforms, offering monogrammed leather products such as diaries, bags, phone cases, wallets and key chains.
But the co-founders had a falling out that led to legal action in 2019 before the matter ended abruptly in May 2021 when Tran sold her 50% stake in the company to Liu for an undisclosed sum.
Liu placed the company in the hands of Sydney liquidators Chifley Advisory on Sept. 30. A deal to sell the brand ahead of the appointment of the liquidator was subsequently terminated and KordaMentha offered the entire tde. company, including stock and IP, for sale last month.
BJM kept key tde. staff. Brookes becomes the major shareholder with Marianne Jones and Anthony Coelho, co-CEOs of CBCH, adding the luxury brand to the portfolio.
Brookes praised KordaMentha for holding on. trade through the administration and Christmas period.
“All credit to the KordaMentha team, Kate Conneely and Rahul Goyal, for adopting a strategy that included continued trading in tde,” he said.
“tde. has strong local and international brand recognition with a flagship store in the QVB, Sydney, this provides a great foundation to strengthen the brand online, brick and mortar expansion into select flagship locations and exclusive partnerships. The combination of personalization, with a premium range of fashionable leather goods, is a unique proposition and remains sought after by customers.”
BJM will take full ownership of the company by the end of January 2023.
Brookes said gift cards will be honored in addition to retaining key personnel.
“We have developed a strong plan to stabilize and then build the brand as we invest in stores and online,” he said.
“In addition, we have a strong supplier base who have indicated their continued support for tde. and they continue to provide fresh stock immediately. We see the tde. suppliers as important trading partners and part of our future.”
The deal reflects Brookes stepping in to save CBCH in September 2020 after it fell under voluntary administration under Sydney entrepreneur COlette Hayman.
Former Myer CEO reduced store count from nearly 140 at peak to 35, then rebuilt CBCH to 57 stores nationwide and more than 700 employees.
“While my original decision to take the majority stake in CBCH was considered to be the opposite at the time, due to the difficulties we faced we have achieved a 300% increase in our store sales despite the Covid headwinds,” he said.
“Since purchasing CBCH, we have increased the store footprint by 60% to 57 stores and revenue by 300%. We have assembled an experienced group of executives who lead our in-house digital, product design and marketing teams to maintain our focus on product development, customer centricity and the balance between digital channels and bricks and mortar. “
The tde. brand will also live on.
“In consultation with the joint CEOs, we will of course leverage synergies, but given the differences in brand personas, it is mandatory that we continue to market the brands independently,” Brookes said.
Once estimated at nearly $14 million when co-founders, Alyce Tran and Tania Liu, sold a stake in tde to fashion brand Oroton for $4.5 million in 2017, then bought it back two years later for $2.2 million, sales reached for the company a high of $27.54 million in FY18 before falling to $23.56 million in FY20.
It is the second successful sale of an ailing start-up for KordaMentha this week, with ASX-listed Kogan.com picking up furniture retailer Brosa for $1.5 million after being placed under voluntary administration last week.