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Joseph

History of the brand

The Joseph brand grew from a small shop attached to a hairdressing salon in King's Road, Chelsea owned by Casablanca-born Joseph Ettedgui and his brothers Maurice and Franklin, to more than 20 London stores, with eight additional outlets in New York and Paris, plus stores in Leeds and Manchester.

Joseph Ettedgui’s love of fashion meant the brothers began displaying designer clothes in their hair salon in the 1960s – including the work of pioneering Japanese designer Kenzo Takada The success of this early collaboration led to move into fashion with the first store opening below the Chelsea hair salon in the early 1970s and the first large-scale retail outlet opening on Sloane Street in 1979.

Designer collaborations

Joseph stores championed the work of many up-and-coming designers, including Margaret Howell, Katharine Hamnett, John Galliano and Azzedine Alaïa. Own brand clothing began with distinctive knitwear (Joseph Tricot) and went on to include women’s clothing, perfume, homewares (Joseph Pour La Maison), and Joe's restaurants. Joseph was recipient of a number of British Fashion Awards, including Knitwear Designer of the Year four times between 1990–94 and a British Fashion Award in 2000 presented by Cherie Blair.[3]

The stores were as distinctive and influential to the UK retail scene as the clothes in them. Joseph was among the first to combine a restaurant and shop in one space. The Sloane Street store has a Joe's Restaurant on site and the Brompton Cross store has a Joe's Restaurant across the road. The Sloane Street, Knightsbridge flagship store was opened in 1979, and was designed by acclaimed architect Norman Foster. Joseph also collaborated with other architects and designers – including Eva Jiricná and Andrée Putman – on its retail and restaurant projects.

Further development of the brand

In 1999 the Ettedgui brothers sold a majority share of the business to Belgian financier Albert Frère, and a minority interest to LVMH.

In 2005 the brand was sold to its licensee in Asia Onward Kashiyama. There are currently more than 80 branches and department store concessions around the world, including in Taiwan, South Korea and Russia.

Between 2009 and 2012, Joseph renovated a number of its stores in the UK including Brook Street, Old Bond Street, Sloane Street, and Westbourne Grove and France including St Germaine and Avenue Montaigne.

In 2011, the company opened its first store in Moscow, Russia, and in 2012, opened a store in Los Angeles, United States. In 2013, the company also opened stores in Beirut and New York, United States.

In 2013, Joseph announced that it would be appearing at London Fashion Week in February 2014, with five of its designers creating an exclusive product for the catwalk show.

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