The storefronts on the Boulevard Saint-Germain in Paris are home to luxury fashion design’s best-known names; Versace, Emporio Armani, and Burberry are all there. In 2013, fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld’s namesake shop also joined the block, perfectly mirroring the German-French haute-couture artist’s style with a minimalist black-and-white facade.
Mr. Lagerfeld is one of the most successful and riveting minds in the international fashion scene. For decades, he has designed creative collections for Chanel and Fendi. The star designer also helped Claudia Schiffer gain supermodel success. He even made his own cat famous. Mr. Lagerfeld has not, however, been able to use his success to establish his own fashion brand.
But British private equity investor Apax Partners and a network of textile professionals from the U.S. fashion retailer Tommy Hilfiger have now taken on that challenge. And at a rapid pace. Since the first Lagerfeld boutique’s launch in Paris in 2013, an additional 54 stores have opened in 14 countries. Apax plans to add two more stores in 2016 in Korea and Bahrain. In 2017, they plan to open a luxury hotel designed by Mr. Lagerfeld in China.