MILAN — Alessandro Dell’Acqua has inked a five-year licensing agreement with Gilmar for the production and worldwide distribution of his N°21 women’s wear line.

Launched in February 2010 at Milan Fashion Week, N°21, which signaled Dell’Acqua’s return to the fashion scene after the closure of his namesake line in June 2009, was formerly produced by Veneto-based manufacturer Vaprio Stile.

“This agreement, which was finalized in a just a week, gave me new lifeblood,” Dell’Acqua said. “I felt the need to have a solid company behind me to continue develop the brand in a serious and constructive way.”

Gilmar, which has already started managing distribution for the brand’s 2013 resort collection, will begin manufacturing N°21 starting with the summer 2013 collection.

“I’m really happy with this new project, not only because Alessandro is one of the last real talents we have in Italy, but also because I really like him as a person,” said Paolo Gerani, chief executive officer of Gilmar, which manufactures the collections for Frankie Morello and Brooksfield, alongside its Iceberg and Ice Iceberg house brands. “He will be totally independent on the stylistic front, and we will work to support the merchandising, which is fundamental to penetrate certain markets.”

Gerani also highlighted a focus on knitwear, “a sector where both Alessandro and we [at Gilmar] are really experts,” and said that the main goal is to build an international reputation for the N°21 brand. He also said they were interested in developing a men’s wear collection. “We don’t exclude entry in the men’s market, which currently needs new stimulus,” Gerani said.

“We talked about this possibility and my idea would be to start with a sort of men’s knitwear capsule collection, very well thought-out and sophisticated,” Dell’Acqua added.
N°21 is carried in about 230 stores worldwide, including Curve in New York, Ikram in Chicago and Matches in London.

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