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Fashion brand Lover rescued by apparel giant

Struggling Australian fashion brand Lover has been sold to Hotsprings after going into voluntary administration last month.

The popular designer label, was rescued by the apparel business, administrators Ferrier Hodgson announced on Wednesday.

‘We are delighted with the outcome of the sale process, being able to announce a sale to Hotsprings is an exciting development that represents a great outcome for employees, customers and suppliers,’ Morgan Kelly of Ferrier Hodgson said.

Bridget Malcolm models a Lover outfit at the David Jones Autumn Winter 2017 Collections Launch

Lover will join Hotsprings’ stable of Australian fashion brands which includes P.E. Nation, Rebecca Vallance, Cooper St Clothing and Jasmine and Will.

Nic Briand and Susien Chong started their brand at Bondi Markets in 2001 and was branded by Vogue Australia as ‘one of Australia’s most successful labels’.

Their unique lace designs were worn by celebrities including Jesinta Campbell, Jennifer Lopez and Candice Swanepoel. Annual revenue for the 2016-2017 year totalled more than $5 million.

Under the new deal the co-founders will be responsible for design and creative direction, reporting to Hotsprings Chief Executive Officer Joanne Goldman, the company said in a statement.

Mr Briand and Ms Chong, together with all staff from the original Lover team will relocate to Hotsprings’ headquarters in Alexandria in early 2018.

Lover is known for its lace and feminine designs (pictured a model wearing a floral Lover dress)

Lover is known for its lace and feminine designs (pictured a model wearing a floral Lover dress)

‘We are excited to acquire Lover and work alongside Nic Briand and Susien Chong, two leading creative talents,’ said Ms Goldman. 

‘Lover is an established iconic label with a signature aesthetic and strong brand following. Our entrepreneurial culture and supply chain expertise will give Lover the platform to accelerate its domestic and international growth.’

Lover co-founder Nic Briand said: ‘Both Susien and I are very excited about the next stage for Lover. With the business strength and acumen of Hotsprings we will now all be able to fully realise the brand’s potential. 

Samantha Harris wears Lover on the runway

A model wears Lover

Nic Briand and Susien Chong started the Lover brand at Bondi Markets and went on to stock their designs in David Jones (pictured Samantha Harris and a model wearing Lover)

‘We would like to thank our staff, creditors and customers for the patience and support they have shown us throughout this period, allowing us to achieve this positive outcome.’

The brand will keep its Strand Arcade store and continue to work with retailers, David Jones and The Iconic.

Hotsprings said they are also planning to open additional Lover retail stores and invest in online and e-commerce platforms.