WHAT’S IN A NAME? The British handbag label Milli Millu has a new name, an updated strategy and more money in the bank to fuel its expansion plans.The brand is now known as Demellier, a reference to its founder Mireia Llusia-Lindh's name, family history and Spanish heritage. Llusia-Lindh said the re-branding was a response to the company's growing international appeal.She said that after the label won a Walpole Brand of Tomorrow award earlier this year, it needed a name that resonated better with international clients."A lot of doors opened for us, and we started selling quite a bit internationally,” said Llusia-Lindh referring to the impact of the award from Walpole, the British luxury goods lobby.She said the Milli Millu name “wasn't working so well in some geographies, so we re-branded” to something that is meant to capture the heritage, modernity and international feel of the brand.“I'm Spanish, I have lived in the U.S. and Switzerland and the brand is British, so we wanted to incorporate that," she said.Launched online six years ago, the label is known for its sleek, modernist aesthetic and accessible prices. Bags range from 225 pounds to 525 pounds.As part of the relaunch, Llusia-Lindh also plans to introduce new styles and broader customization features. The new range takes key styles, such as roomy leather totes and cross body bags, and transforms them in a range of luxurious suede, leather and stud embellishments.New, more fashion-forward pieces have also been added to the offer, such as a structured tote with playful, ruffled trim.The company, which has also received fresh investment, will continue to focus on direct-to-consumer sales via its own web site, which has just been revamped. Llusia-Lindh also said there are plans to open a store in London, although she declined to give any details.Until now, the company has been completely self-funded.“I put 50,000 pounds into the business, and it grew organically. Following the Walpole award, a few investors approached us and we decided to partner with a London-based fund that has great experience in retail,” said Llusia-Lindh, who declined to mention the name of the new investor due to a confidentiality agreement.
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