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Kotur, a Hong Kong-based handbag brand that has doubled sales each year since launching in 2006, is expanding distribution into Asia and the Middle East and deepening its foothold in Europe.
This story first appeared in the May 12, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The company founded by designer Fiona Kotur also has increased the number of styles in its line. The U.S. is the brand’s largest market, which has distribution in 250 doors worldwide, including Neiman Marcus and Scoop.
Kotur had $5 million in wholesale sales in 2007, industry sources said. The firm wants to double sales this year.
The fall collection is the largest to date with 300 styles, including a chain maille bag entwined with crystals and a group of patchwork leather bags inspired by artist Sonya Delaunay.
This year, Kotur plans to further develop the international business after entering Europe last year. The brand is sold at Harvey Nichols and Harrods in London, and has partnered with the Winwood Italia showroom in Milan.
Kotur, a New York native who moved to Hong Kong in 2002, has a background in accessories and fashion. She was a stylist and later an accessories designer at Ralph Lauren, helped launch Old Navy accessories in 1996 and in 2004 helped her friend Tory Burch set up the infrastructure for Burch’s contemporary line.
“I love starting businesses; I love the creative challenge,” she said.
Kotur’s bags have a luxury feel, but the designer isn’t limited by price. Retail prices range from $300 for an embellished straw satchel to $4,000 for an exotic skin day bag.
“I’m not really about trend or price point,” Kotur said. “If a customer likes it, they’ll buy it.”
Because of the wide price range, Kotur bags are sometimes merchandised in the contemporary area of a store and sometimes on the main floor.
“We’ve done very well with the clutches” with their “unique styling and color,” said Sandra Wilson, accessories fashion director for Neiman Marcus. “One of the reasons why I think we do well [with Kotur] is that they offer great trend choices for well-priced exotics and cross different age categories.”