SYDNEY — Whether or not Camilla lands yet another cameo in “The White Lotus,” the Sydney-based label that is hot on the heels of Zimmermann as Australia’s next breakout resortwear star is poised to grow its global footprint thanks to a cash injection from Tattarang.
The West Australian-based private investment group controlled by mining magnate Andrew Forrest has acquired a minority stake in Camilla, representing the brand’s first external investor since it was launched by artist and former actor Camilla Franks in 2004.
The deal, reported to be worth 40 million Australian dollars, or $28.3 million at current exchange, is Tattarang’s latest investment in the lifestyle space. In October 2020, the company acquired Australian bush outfitter R.M. Williams from L Catterton for a reported 190 million Australian dollars, or $135 million at the time.
“We are delighted to back Camilla Franks, an extraordinary entrepreneur leading a cutting-edge fashion brand doing amazing things in the creative space,” said Tattarang co-chair Nicola Forrest. “Camilla is a brilliant example of a passionate and committed entrepreneur who truly cares about her brand and her customers and has put Australian fashion on the global stage, as well as being a role model to other female founders.”
Franks said: “It was time we let someone else into the fold to help spread our wings that little bit further. It was important to me to find the right partner to help get us to the next chapter. I’m so happy to have found Nicola and the Tattarang family — they are the perfect fit for the brand and align with the vision we have for Camilla.”
Noted for its kaftans, playsuits and swimwear in kaleidoscopic prints, the Camilla brand has been worn by Beyoncé, Oprah Winfrey, Jennifer Lopez, Robbie Williams and Gwen Stefani.
Arguably the brand’s biggest media moments to date have been multiple appearances throughout the first two seasons of HBO’s hit series “The White Lotus.” It’s primarily worn by Jennifer Coolidge’s character Tanya McQuoid, but the second season also saw French actor Bruno Gouery don Camilla’s menswear. Franks herself was even invited to be an extra in a Season Two party scene.
According to documents filed with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, Camilla posted revenues of 118.2 million Australian dollars in fiscal 2022, or $85 million at average exchange rates, up 21 percent, and profits of 8.9 million Australian dollars, or $6.4 million, up 11.2 percent.
International sales account for 40 percent of the business, with digital sales more than doubling since 2018 and now representing 47 percent of sales. The company reports its U.S. website has experienced 300 percent growth over the past three years.
There are 300 wholesale clients in 65 markets, which include Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue, and 25 stand-alone Camilla boutiques in Australia and the U.S., where U.S. locations opened in 2019 in Miami’s Aventura Mall and Orange County’s South Coast Plaza.
Two new U.S. luxury mall stores are due to open in early 2024 in Bal Harbour, Miami and Short Hills, New Jersey, with an additional 13 locations being eyed to open by 2027.