Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - US fashion label Henri Bendel to close after 123 years in business

US fashion label Henri Bendel to close after 123 years in business

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Luxury sunglasses and handbag at the Henri Bendel Surf Sport 2018 Collection launch at The Bungalow in California on April 27. afp

US fashion label Henri Bendel to close after 123 years in business

UPSCALE US fashion label Henri Bendel – known in recent years for its luxury handbags and shoes – will shut down in January after 123 years in business, parent company L Brands has announced.

The Bendel website and all of the label’s 23 stores in the United States, including the flagship location on New York’s Fifth Avenue, will remain open through the holiday shopping season, L Brands said in a statement.

But from the start of 2019, the parent company said it will put its focus on the group’s more profitable labels.

“We are committed to improving performance in the business and increasing shareholder value,” L Brands chairman and CEO Leslie Wexner said in a statement released on Thursday.

“As part of that effort, we have decided to stop operating Bendel to improve company profitability and focus on our larger brands that have greater growth potential.”

Warhol as illustrator

The closing of the Bendel stores, whose well-heeled customers could be easily spotted in Manhattan thanks to the label’s chic brown and white-striped packaging, marks the end of a fashion journey begun in 1895.

That year, Louisiana-born designer Henri Bendel, originally a hatmaker, opened his first shop in New York’s Greenwich Village.

The company boasts that Bendel was the first luxury retailer with a store on upper Fifth Avenue – an area that today is home to the world’s top brands.

In the 1960s, the company hired Andy Warhol as an in-house illustrator.

Thanks to the wild popularity of the hit television show Sex and the City, Bendel won over a new generation of fans.

Bendel women will likely stock up on the company’s offerings before year’s end, with L Brands promising “new merchandise” during that period.

Bendel, which was acquired by L Brands in 1985, is suffering from sluggish sales: it is expected to post an operating loss of $45 million for 2018, against revenues of $85 million, the parent company said.

L Brands controls a stable of labels including lingerie shop Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works.

Last year, the group – which operates more than 3,000 stores in the US, Canada and Britain – reported revenue of more than $12 billion.

L Brands did not reveal how many employees would be affected by the closure of Bendel.

MOST VIEWED

  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • PM dispels lockdown rumours, gifts masks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on November 12 denied rumours that he will lock down the country in response to increased Covid-19 fears, referring to them as propaganda aimed at destabilising the country. In a Facebook post, he said some people had spread rumours that the government

  • SilkAir adds flight to Phnom Penh schedule

    Silkair (Singapore) Pte Ltd is increasing its flight frequency between Phnom Penh and Singapore with a third weekly flight on Saturdays, according to Cambodia Airports’ Facebook page. The other flights offered are on Tuesdays and Sundays, with an estimated Phnom Penh arrival time at 5:35pm