MILAN — Neil Barrett is stepping up his game with a new production partner.
The British, Milan-based menswear designer has inked an agreement with HIM Co. SpA, previously known as Onward Luxury Group, for the manufacturing of his namesake collections and to “guarantee the future development” of the brand, the company said in a statement.
The deal will come into full effect with the fall 2023 collection to be presented in January in Milan, although the spring 2023 lineup is to be partially produced by HIM Co.
As reported, in 2021 Barrett charted a new course for the brand, not renewing his previous production licensing agreement and starting collaborations with different manufacturing companies to make the collections more accessible, at the same time managing distribution in-house.
The deal with HIM Co. will allow Barrett to maintain oversight on wholesale and retail operations.
The brand counts around 200 stockists, including Modes, LuisaViaRoma, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols Dubai, among others. It also operates several flagships in China and South Korea.
“I am excited about this new chapter, and I believe that together with HIM Co. we can build strong foundations to deliver creative, wearable and desirable collections in the future,” Barrett said.
A champion of ’90s minimalism with stints at Prada, Barrett’s fashion lexicon is defined by exacting silhouettes, sharp tailoring and military inflections.
In 2020 Onward Holdings Co. Ltd. sold its European subsidiary Onward Luxury Group, formerly known as Gibò Group, signaling a potential change of strategy for the Tokyo-based apparel giant.
Through a management buyout, entrepreneur Franco Pené, the founder of Gibò, together with Fabio Ducci and Antonello Orunesu Preiata, chief executive officer and chief financial officer of OLG, respectively, took full control of the company, renaming it HIM Co SpA — High Italian Manufacturing.
The manufacturing and distribution company boasts production agreements and licenses with a range of luxury fashion and footwear brands, including Jil Sander, JW Anderson, Proenza Schouler, Rochas and Victoria Beckham, among others. It also runs the house brands Hyina, F_Wd and Carlotha Ray.