NEW YORK — Samsonite has a new designer on the case — Alexander McQueen

The 96-year-old luggage company has signed a partnership with McQueen to develop a collection of travel bags, luggage and accessories under the premium Samsonite Black Label brand.

McQueen follows fashion designer Matthew Williamson, who launched a limited-edition collection for the label last fall. Samsonite Black Label by Alexander McQueen will join other collections, including one created by industrial designer Marc Newson, and the Vintage, X’Lite and Signat Attaché lines.

McQueen’s first offering for the brand, which he said is a “unique collaboration” between the company’s expertise and his own creative aesthetic, will be unveiled this fall. It is anticipated to hit Samsonite Black Label stores, Alexander McQueen boutiques, high-end department stores and the Samsonite Black Label Web site in spring 2007. Prices and details of the designs were not available.

Quentin Mackay, Samsonite’s creative director, said in a statement that the collaboration enhances “our rich heritage of designer partnerships.”

Samsonite had sales of $902.9 million for fiscal 2005, compared with $776.5 million in 2004. Sales from operations in the Americas increased 12.8 percent to $379.1 million during that period.

This story first appeared in the July 10, 2006 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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