Piper has taken a significant minority stake in Orlebar Brown, one of the UK’s most exciting premium menswear clothing brands.
Founded in 2007 by Adam Brown and former business partner Julia Simpson-Orlebar, Orlebar Brown immediately filled a gap in the market by providing a more tailored approach to beach and swim shorts for men. Since its inception the range has evolved into a full collection of resortwear that revolves around the theme of travel, holiday and sun.
Originally launched online, the business has developed into a multi-channel brand with a fast-growing international reach, distributing to more than 250 doors in 38 countries, including Selfridges, Harrods and Mr Porter in the UK, and Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys and Jeffrey in the US. The business has three standalone stores in Britain and sells online to 105 countries worldwide.
Piper, which backed and helped turn Boden into an iconic international brand, is providing £8m of growth capital to enable Orlebar Brown to expand its presence in the US and Europe, alongside further investment into online marketing across the world. The investment is the fourth from Piper’s £107m, fifth fund.
Adam Brown commented: ‘We are very excited about the partnership we have with Piper. I am delighted to be working with partners who share the same values and ambitions as ourselves. The team’s extensive experience and knowledge of growing consumer brands will help us accelerate our growth and simultaneously protect our DNA. Piper has worked hard to complete the deal in six weeks, so that the business wasn’t distracted at its key selling time, and are committed to building Orlebar Brown into a globally recognized, British luxury fashion business.”
Peter Kemp-Welch, of Piper, said: ‘We have followed the success of Orlebar Brown from a very early stage, and can see that the brand has developed a very strong handwriting which appeals to a wide range of men across the world. We can see myriad growth opportunities for Orlebar Brown, especially the potential to expand its clothing range to satisfy demand for a broader product offering, as well as the chance to grow the US business which already represents nearly 30% of sales.’
Private investment firm Venrex and luxury entrepreneur John Ayton, both early investors in the company, will continue to remain involved in the business.