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22 Dec

H&M Pulls Justin Bieber Project, Off-calendar Shows in Paris

GHOSTED: Lower than 24 hours after stating that it might proceed to sell a collaborative collection with Justin Bieber — despite the musician publicly criticizing those designs and saying he didn’t approve them — H&M has reversed course and has stopped selling the pieces.

On Monday, Bieber posted to Instagram Stories that he hadn’t approved any of the H&M collection, posting “All without my permission and approval [SMH] I wouldn’t buy it if I were you.”

He later posted to his 270 million Instagram followers: “H&M merch they fabricated from me is trash and I didn’t approve it. Don’t buy it.”

The Swedish fast-fashion chain countered that claim on Monday, telling WWD that “as with other licensed products and partnerships, H&M followed proper approval and procedures.” At the moment, the corporate said the merchandise would remain on sale but said “we’d like to look into this more to know, before we take motion.”

By Tuesday, nonetheless, H&M had modified its tune a bit. In a press release, the retailer reiterated Bieber’s involvement, but noted that the designs are not any longer being sold. An organization spokesperson told WWD Wednesday, “As mentioned in our previous statement, H&M has followed proper approval procedures. Out of respect for the collaboration and Justin Bieber, we now have removed the clothes from our stores and online.” 

Representatives didn’t respond immediately to requests for comment Wednesday.

Bieber’s image was featured on a dress, sweatshirt, T-shirt and tote bag. A phone case and one $40 hoodie were imprinted with “I miss you greater than life” — a reference to the lyrics from his song, “Ghost.”

The alliance was not a one-hit wonder for the Grammy winner and the Swedish retail behemoth. The 2 parties had teamed up back in 2017 for a “Stadium Tour” collaboration, after Bieber had canceled the last leg of his “Purpose” tour dates. The assortment consisted of hoodies, T-shirts with graphic designs, bomber jackets and sweatpants that were harking back to his official tour merchandise.

Given their social media reach, global superstars like Bieber have the influence to sway hundreds of thousands of consumers toward or away from a brand. Previously few years, select incidents have led to legal motion, including a lawsuit that Ariana Grande brought against Without end 21 in 2019.

The H&M spokesperson didn’t respond immediately as as to if the retailer is considering or has taken any legal motion against the 28-year-old musician. A representative for Bieber didn’t respond Wednesday to a request for comment regarding any potential legal motion against H&M.

He and his wife Hailey have an abundance of endorsement deals and business ventures, including her recent launch of Rhode Beauty. — Rosemary Feitelberg

SHOW MORE: High fashion week may end on Jan. 26 however the shows will go on, with Patou and Zadig & Voltaire holding off-calendar shows on Jan. 27 in undisclosed locations in Paris.

Starting the day shall be Patou, with a ten a.m. show, the second under the tenure of artistic director Guillaume Henry.

Julia Fox closing the Patou spring 2023.

Courtesy of Patou

The brand’s chief executive officer Sophie Brocart said the date segued with a desire to create “an enjoyable event, a real ready-to-wear show the morning just after couture, a friendly moment with coffees awaiting attendees, for instance.”

The morning after couture is “an alternate moment that suits well Patou, less crowded day when we are able to do things otherwise, when there’s less pressure for attendees and models to run from one show to a different, when the agenda isn’t packed” just like the womenswear schedule of Paris Fashion Week, she continued.

Patou’s debut show last July was held within the brand’s Ile de la Cité offices, with Julia Fox closing the show in a formfitting dress in a Belle Époque-inspired print.

Zadig & Voltaire, alternatively, staked the 8:30 p.m. spot on Jan. 27.

Its return last June after five years of showing in Latest York marked the French label’s reinvention and a doubling down on its roots as a “French fashion house with French DNA,” based on designer Cecilia Bönström.

She told WWD on the time that Zadig & Voltaire had “really grown into a global company” and that it was essential for the brand to return as they “really need to be anchored there.”

To follow up June’s scaffolding-inspired set within the Musée des Arts Décoratifs that symbolized its brand being under construction, communication and image director Jordan Henrion said the “effortless luxury” brand would “set every thing on fire” for fall 2023. — Lily Templeton

MOVING UP: Matt Rock has been named president, Americas, at Pentland Brands. The role oversees Speedo in addition to Pentland’s full portfolio, which incorporates Endura and Mitre for the Americas region.

Matt Rock

Matt Rock

courtesy shot

Rock succeeds Jim Gerson, who’s retiring at the top of this 12 months after the successful transition of the Speedo North America business from PVH Corp. into Pentland Brands. Tom Whitmer, previously executive vp, operations, Americas, has been promoted to chief operating officer, Americas.

Rock, who was formerly president, Asia Pacific, began his profession working in sales for Puma and joined the Pentland Brands business in 2005 as sales director for Ted Baker footwear. He was promoted to managing director in 2007 and through that point, increased Ted Baker footwear sales by greater than 800 percent and grew distribution from eight to twenty-eight markets. Rock joined the Pentland Brands executive team as global supply chain director in 2015 and was appointed president, Asia Pacific, in 2018, answerable for each the worldwide supply chain and the regional business teams. During this time, Rock transformed each functions into multibrand operations and led the event of a “digital-first” China strategy, leading to a one hundred pc growth in sales.

Chirag Patel, chief executive officer of Pentland Brands, thanked Gerson for “his regular leadership throughout the transition. His knowledge, expertise and deep understanding of individuals were instrumental in successfully onboarding the Speedo North America business,” he said.

Succeeding Rock as president, Asia Pacific, is Abhy Thomas Joseph, and Charlotte Cox continues in her role as president, EMEA.

“The acquisition and transition of the Speedo North America business means we at the moment are a very global organization. With strong leadership teams now in place across our three key regions — North America, Asia Pacific and Europe — we’re in a fantastic position to deliver on our ambition to construct a world portfolio of pioneering brands that make life higher,” Patel said.

In 2020, following its acquisition of the Speedo North America business from PVH for $170 million in money, Pentland Brands outlined its plans to drive an increased emphasis on sustainability and larger opportunities for its core brands — Speedo, Berghaus, Endura, Ellesse and SeaVees — within the U.S. market. — Lisa Lockwood

IN-HOUSE EXECS: The Fashioneering Lab, a Dallas-based fractional consultancy and think tank that goals to assist brands grow, has added eight recent executives in residence to supply advice and directions in a lot of areas.

Kate Sheldon

Kate Sheldon, founding father of The Fashioneering Lab.


Kate Sheldon, Fashioneering’s chief executive, said the brand new executives include Lars Nilsson, a CFDA member and founder and artistic director of Mr. Nilsson; Daryl Kerrigan, a CFDA Perry Ellis award winner and founding father of Daryl K., and Kristen Sosa, chief merchant at Saks Fifth Avenue.

Other recently added executives in residence are Sharon Graubard, Michael Cleghorn, Elena Bertone, Irene Bernadis and Timothy Parent.

The Fashioneering Lab was launched last 12 months by Sheldon, who has worked as a designer, a design consultant and spent a decade at Neiman Marcus as a buyer of designer collections including Chanel and Christian Dior.

She began her business after noticing her consulting clients, big and small, needed advice on a variety of topics, not only design, but additionally sourcing, optimizing e-commerce, regional expansion, supply chain issues and tech.

The Fashioneering Lab was conceived as a technique to offer growth insights from a lot of experts for lower than the value of full-time hires and to create more communication between strategic advisers.

“When launching The Fashioneering Lab’s consultancy and think tank, I sought to construct a whole ecosystem of strategists, thought leaders, and tacticians focused on preparing each emerging and heritage brands for the long run,” Sheldon said. “Leveraging our deep-rooted and broad industry expertise, culture of collaboration and knowledge sharing, we’re focused on accelerating the adoption of sustainability, circularity, inclusivity, fashion technology and adapting to shifts in work culture and business models.” — Deborah Belgum

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