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Robert Clergerie Names Roland Mouret

Designer to become shoemaker’s creative director.

PARIS — Gearing up for a growth phase under new ownership, Robert Clergerie has tapped Roland Mouret as creative director.

The London-based French designer is expected to unveil his first designs for the luxury French shoemaker later this year.

Mouret’s signature business, which spans women’s and men’s collections that he shows during fashion weeks in Paris, will continue as usual.

Last April, Fung Capital and fashion veteran Jean-Marc Loubier teamed up to acquire a majority stake in Clergerie from its namesake founder. RC Holdings — a new entity held by Fung Brands Ltd., a subsidiary of Fung Capital Ltd., and Loubier — took a 90 percent stake in Financiere de Romans, which owns the Clergerie, Fenestrier and Espace brands, with the founder maintaining 10 percent.

London-based Fung Capital is the private equity partnership of Victor and William Fung of Li & Fung Ltd., and the Hong Kong-based sourcing titan has made it clear acquisitions are on the agenda.

Indeed, Fung is in discussions to acquire elite Belgian leather goods firm Delvaux, market sources said. The likelihood of a deal could not be learned.

Fung officials declined to comment Thursday.

Reached in Korea, Loubier said Mouret’s collections for Clergerie would span shoes and accessories. He praised Mouret’s devotion to high quality, and said he would bring a dose of fashion edge and modernity to chic, yet wearable styles for which Clergerie is known.

Loubier noted that Mouret worked at Clergerie’s elbow early in his fashion career, and therefore is already armed with first-hand knowledge of the brand’s DNA and legacy.

Clergerie sees significant expansion potential in Europe, the U.S. and Asia. The company generates revenues of more than 20 million euros, or $28.3 million at current exchange, and there are 20 freestanding Clergerie stores in France, the U.K., Spain, Switzerland and the U.S.