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Bill Blass Sold; Couture Line to Remain Intact

>> Bill Blass has had a long, bumpy history since its namesake designer left in 1999, the latest setback coming two weeks ago when owners NexCen closed the brand entirely, laying off 60 employees — some of which had been with the label for almost 40 years — with no severance.  

After months of trying to sell the brand to no avail, NexCen has finally found a buyer for Blass — midtier apparel manufacturer Peacock International Holdings, who nabbed the great American sportswear label for a steal — $10 million, compared to the $25 million NexCen was looking for in September.  

Although few expected Peacock to revive the Bill Blass Couture line that Peter Som left in October with no successor and for which NexCen declined to produce a Spring 2009 collection, the new owner has plans to bring the ready-to-wear back "within nine to 12 months."  Peacock already has some designers in mind to restart the collection but won't name names, noting that they will be choosing carefully: "You need somebody with a vision that really ties in to the Bill Blass DNA — and you need consistency, someone who will be in place beyond a year or two."
*image: source

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