Chinese fast-fashion giant Peacebird has acquired a 20 percent stake in the Chinese designer label 8on8, founded by Central Saint Martins alumni Gong Li, for 10 million renminbi, or $1.6 million, the company disclosed in its annual report.
Founded in 2017 by Gong, 8on8 showed on the official calendar of London Fashion Week Men’s for two seasons in 2020, supported by GQ China. The brand later launched successful collaborations with Asics, Puma, Kappa, and became the first Chinese brand to ever work with Canali on a capsule collection last year.
Gong told WWD in an earlier interview that “8on8 stands for the mature energy of the young generation, specialized in new waves of classic menswear, based on my nostalgic view but comes out with a futuristic outlook.”
With regard to the partnership with Peacebird, the designer said he took the investment not because he needed the financial injection to keep his business afloat, but he sees the opportunity to create long-term value beyond one-off collaborations, and ultimately elevate the Chinese fashion industry by working closely and continuously with major players like Peacebird.
He also revealed he will release a sustainable capsule collection with Peacebird later this year.
8on8 is the first Chinese independent designer brand with which Peacebird has formed an official partnership. The Ningbo-based fashion retailer previously signed a similar deal with French fashion house Alexis Mabille in 2015, and acquired the China business of the Italian skateboarding brand Coppolella in 2020.
Peacebird has also collaborated with local fashion talents including Susan Fang, Xuzhi, WMWM, Calvin Luo, Garçon by Gçogcn, Nomanoman, Staffonly and Anguis Chiang on various projects to make the brand appeal more attractive to the fashion community.
In 2021, Peacebird reported revenue of 10.92 billion renminbi, or $1.7 billion, an increase of 16.3 percent year-over-year. Net profit in the period declined by 5 percent to 680 million renminbi, or $107 million. The company attributed the decline in profit to the decline in retail performance in the fourth quarter of 2021 and the increase in expenses.
The company operates 5,214 stores across China as of 2021.
Alexis Mabille Partners With China’s Peacebird
Canali Unveils Men’s Capsule With 8on8