In recent days, NexCen has experienced a meltdown unlike anything the fashion world has seen, leaving Bill Blass, its star brand, in play as vulture investors circle to assess what value remains. NexCen's failure to disclose a $30m debt that must be paid back by October has sent its stock reeling and could very likely result in the company going bankrupt. Its CEO Robert D'Loren's job is at stake and the company's investors and other stakeholders are furious.
The dramatic turn of events underlines the fact that even culturally important brands like Bill Blass can suffer collateral damage in the new era that has brought fashion and finance together.
In February, Lauren Goldstein Crowe investigated NexCen's business model in the FT. Having spent several days with D'Loren and his team, Lauren saw the inner workings of the company, its team dynamic and business model. I asked Lauren if she would answer a few questions about what might lie behind the dramatic headlines and what could be in store for NexCen in the weeks to come.