Roland Mouret, the prominent fashion designer, is in urgent talks over his future amid fears he is about to collapse into administration.
Sky News has learned that stakeholders at 19RM, which counts entertainment mogul Simon Fuller among its backers, are discussing the possibility of bringing in insolvency experts in a few days.
Further details on the potential directors’ appointment were unclear on Thursday, and a source close to the talks said there remained a possibility the administration could be avoided.
“Shareholders have worked and continue to work with Roland Mouret’s management to agree a way forward for the company,” a joint statement released by the company’s investors said Thursday.
Roland Mouret’s designs have been worn by celebrities and public figures ranging from actress Scarlett Johansson and former Prime Minister Theresa May to the Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex.
Last year, The Grosvenor Estate, one of London’s largest business owners, became a minority investor in Roland Mouret with a new fund set up to help its tenants weather the pandemic.
Sources said that Grosvenor and XIX Entertainment, the media and artist management group founded by Mr. Fuller, were discussing an alternative funding proposal to prevent Roland Mouret from going untrusted, although the details of that proposal are not clear.
Discussions were reportedly held on Thursday on the fate of the company.
In an interview with the Financial Times just this month, Mr Mouret vowed to be the “last man standing” in the industry after seeing the pandemic hit his business.
Predicting that it would take the company five years to recover, he described the early part of the COVID-19 crisis as “really lonely.”
Mr. Mouret and XIX had structured the company into a joint venture before the pandemic.
Its other shareholders now include Mark Langthorne, author and entrepreneur.
Roland Mouret’s London outlet is on Carlos Place, close to the five-star Connaught Hotel and a myriad of high-end names in the luxury sector.
The fashion designer posted a return to profits in his 2019 accounts, after a period of deficit that resulted in the closure of his store in New York.
If the company slips into administration, it wouldn’t be the first high-end fashion brand to do so this year.
In April, Ralph & Russo – another favorite creator of Meghan Markle – has collapsed, sparking a bitter feud between its founders and shareholders that has involved allegations of fraud.
Roland Mouret, XIX and Grosvenor have all been contacted for comment.