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New York-based Russian label J.Mendel files for bankruptcy

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After fighting creditors in court for several months now, fashion label J.Mendel has filed for bankruptcy, in a last minute bid to restructure debts and continue operations.

SEE ALSO : Nine West declares bankruptcy, plans sell-off

The U.S-based womenswear brand has officially filed for Chapter 11 protection in bankruptcy court in New York.

According to J.Mendel’s controlling investor Stallion Inc. and its John Georgiades — who has been at the helm of the Russia-founded firm since Marc Durie’s leaving as CEO in early 2016 – the company plans to “move forward” despite the news.

“Restructuring the company’s debts will allow J.Mendel to face the current challenging luxury retail environment, and I am confident that this will allow the company to move forward with renewed financial stability, allowing us to focus on crafting the best designs for our devoted clientele,” said Georgiades.

With bills owing to landlords and modelling agencies, among other firms, J.Mendel’s creative director and brand scion Gilles Mendel, revealed that he continues to work on the label’s upcoming collection.

“I am actively designing our spring 2019 collection and look forward to presenting it in September during fashion week,” said Mendel.

Founded in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1870 before moving to New York in the 1980s under Mendel’s guide, J.Mendel is known its formal women’s wear and gowns that often appear on red carpets.

In 2015, J.Mendel reportedly made some $30 million a year in sales from its ready-to-wear, couture, bridal and accessories lines.

According to recent U.S. press reports, the brand owes real estate firm The Arsenal Co. $1.1 million relating to the lease of an entire floor in a Midtown building, where the brand previously kept its headquarters, which is left early and has since stopped paying.

Earlier this year, public relations firm Karla Otto said the brand owed $260,000 for its work putting on J.Mendel’s first couture show in July 2016 in Paris.

SEE ALSO : Nine West, Bandolino brands sold for $340m

The New York Times is also suing J.Mendel for $28,000 owed for advertising. DNA Model Management is owed close to $60,000 in unpaid modelling fees while Er Fur Trading Corp. requires $107,500 for animal fur skins.

It also owes e-commerce platform management company Acadaca LLC some $60,000.

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