The co-creative directors of DKNY, Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne, are exiting the brand and focusing on their own label, Public School, WWD reports. Caroline Brown, the chief executive officer of Donna Karan International, is also leaving the company. The three will officially exit their positions at the end of the year.
Their departures coincide with the closing of the sale of DKI from parent company LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton to G-III Apparel Group, Ltd. for $650 million today. According to WWD, the designers’ and Brown’s retreat were expected when news of the sale broke this summer.
Chow and Osborne said in a joint statement:
“Given the company sale and subsequent change in strategies, we have decided to step down and focus on our own business Public School. It’s been an unbelievable experience to work side by side with the wonderful people at DKNY, especially our amazing design team and atelier. We wish the company success in the future.”
The Public School duo was appointed as DKNY’s co-creative directors in April 2015, ushering in a “creative overhaul” for the brand in veins like marketing, design and digital. They showed their first collection for the label, the Spring 2016 range, in September 2015.
Brown, who’s been CEO of DKI since January 2015, said, “As Donna Karan International transitions to new ownership and therefore new directions, I have decided it is the right time to step down and explore new opportunities.”
Company founder Donna Karan also responded to the news. She told WWD:
“The people of Donna Karan have my heart. Together, as a family, we created and built two brands, Donna Karan and DKNY, that I will always be thankful and proud bear my name. I want to send everyone at the company my love and thanks for their enormous energy, passion, creativity, and dedication, and good wishes as this new chapter begins.”
Under the G-III umbrella, DKNY will be in the company of brands like Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, Karl Lagerfeld, Vince Camuto and Levi’s. “I know the company rests in good hands under the new leadership of G-III for the next stage of its development,” Brown added.
From: Harper’s BAZAAR US