Sustainable luxury, the basis of entrepreneurial success – interview with founder of Love Brand & Co
1. What has been the backbone of your inspiration when creating a company to specialize solely on men’s and boys swimwear?
Love Brand is not solely swimwear. The company plans to expand through a series of ready-to-wear products, each intrinsically dedicated to a relevant charity. This idea to blend or bisociate previously unrelated matrices; a luxury collection with a worthy cause is the backbone of Love Brand & Co. ‘Trunks for Trunks’ (swimming trunks for endangered Asian elephants) is just one of our blends. I was inspired and motivated by the plight of the iconic animal; the world has lost 90% of wild Asian elephants in the last 100 years. By raising awareness and donations of profits we can help Elephant Family save this incredible animal from extinction in the wild.
2. What are your mid and long term expectation financial expectations? How large is your team?
Love Brand & Co. is a typical start up in its launch stage. We currently have a small team of four but that number I expect and hope will grow with the business. Right now we are focused on our current collection of Mens and matching boys swimwear. We are telling our story and testing our debut product in the market. Mid term we will continue to develop products and engage new customers with them and thier respective causes. Long term I have a big dream but we will take it a step at a time.
3. Nowadays, there are so many endangered animal species worldwide. Why elephants? And why Asia?
Exactly, there are many. But you have to start somewhere. Actually with elephants, it started as neat connection I came up with between product and problem. With rhyme or the double entendre in this case, the Love Brand blend is catchy and that is half the point. I learnt that wild Asian elephants were under serious threat of extinction when the Elephant Charity paraded painted elephants across London and the idea clicked. It was only after exploring the elephant corridors or ‘conflict’ zones in India and spending time with Asian elephants, that I really understood the problems involved and became really passionate about helping save them.
4. Your current distribution is online (e-commerce) and several multi-brand boutiques in select international destination. Is this the strategy you wish to pursue for the future too? Do you have any plans for a mono-brand boutique?
The current strategy is to distribute Love Brand & Co. online through our E-Boutique www.lovebrand.com and through select resorts, boutiques and department stores. The long term dream is a mono-brand boutique. We plan to blend concepts together for the Love Brand consumer experience.
5. Where are your products made? Do you have a protective labor sustainability policy?
Our current collection is made in Hong Kong. We are very proud of the craftmanship and quality produced. We work closely with our supplier, echoing our ethical and environmental standards.
6. Most other similar premium brands have, soon after launch, diversified their product range. Do you have such plans and what do you think about diversification?
I am designing a number of new products as we speak. We plan to introduce one of these next year. My lips are sealed for the moment to what this is and for what it will be in aid of.
7. What is the current positioning of your brand? – premium, upmarket, luxury etc
Love Brand & Co. we aim to be classed as luxury. We are focused on delivering the best of consumer experiences: excellent designer product, attention to detail, easy shop attitude and exciting concept blending.
8. What is the profile of your most loyal consumer / buyer?
We are finding Love Brand appeals to a wide demographic. Our customers range between men and boys of all ages from all over the world. We are seeing a great deal of return custom, which is an encouraging indicator. We get lots of great feedback not just from the performance of the product but on the enjoyable experience of giving/receiving Love Brand.
9. Which is your company’s most successful market outside the UK?
We are also successful in France, Spain and India, which we look forward to furthering in 2013, as well as new markets that are showing real interest in Love Brand & Co. including parts of United States, Russia, Middle East and Australia.