Vanguards Rebrands Aeron as Responsible and Transparent Knitwear Specialist

·4 min read

LONDON — Aeron, the womenswear fashion label from Budapest owned by Vanguards Group, will be repositioned as a responsible and transparent knitwear label, WWD has learned.

An official announcement is expected on Monday, coinciding with the release of the brand’s pre-fall 2022 collection.

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The company has also tweaked the price points and created a new, A-shaped logo, brand identity, packaging and signature color: mimosa yellow. The new shade is meant to serve as a metaphor for “resilience, sensitivity and the expansion of one’s life,” according to the brand.

Eszter Áron, the founder of the central European label who comes from a generation of tailors, said the company decided to focus on knitwear because it has been the best-performing category so far.

“It also allows a wider market opportunity for the company,” she added in an interview with WWD.

Eszter Áron - Credit: Courtesy
Eszter Áron - Credit: Courtesy

Courtesy

More importantly, Áron added that new developments in garment technology now allow Aeron to become a responsible and transparent knitwear label without asking customers to pay a premium.

The relaunch will see the introduction of its new seasonless and sustainable core collection called Zero, with sizes ranging from XXS to XXL. The introduction of Zero means that entry price points for the overall collection are lower than in the past.

Zero features knitted pieces made exclusively from the zero-waste Wholegarment technology on Shima Seiki machinery, which enables seam-free knitwear made in three dimensions directly from the machine, cutting down waste and energy consumption.

This machine, in addition to revised sourcing practices and a finer-tuned design process, means that 75 percent of the fall 2022 collection has been made from natural materials, while 63 percent are certified sustainable pieces.

All production is based in Hungary, or nearby countries, which the company said has has helped to reduce its carbon footprint significantly.

The line will launch with a palette of black and cream. New seasonal colors, and styles, will be added in the coming months.

The core collection and the seasonal offerings will be priced differently. The Zero line starts from 115 euros to 495 euros, while the more trend-focused fashion collection will offer a wider range of knitted and woven styles, as well as categories such as tailoring and leather, through the lens of knitwear, with prices between 195 euros and 1,295 euros.

A look from the Aeron pre-fall 2022 collection. - Credit: Courtesy
A look from the Aeron pre-fall 2022 collection. - Credit: Courtesy

Courtesy

“With the Zero line, every season we style the woven collection with staple knitwear pieces. So eventually a full wardrobe comes alive,” Áron said.

Following the rebrand, the label is looking to expand its business from predominantly online and wholesale to physical retail, said Virag Varga, managing director at Aeron.

In a first step, the brand will upgrade its corner at Harrods to reflect the new identity. Looking at the mid to longer-term, Varga also revealed that the brand will be looking to expand its retail footprint by opening its first physical retail flagship “closer to home.”

Founded in 2012 thanks to the help of friends and investors, the label was acquired by the Hungarian fashion group Vanguards in December 2019.

The fashion group also owns Nanushka, where group founder Peter Baldaszti is the chief executive officer, and married to the brand’s creative director Sandra Sandor. It also owns Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo’s Milanese brand Sunnei.

Three looks from Aeron’s Zero core collection. - Credit: Courtesy
Three looks from Aeron’s Zero core collection. - Credit: Courtesy

Courtesy

“The Vanguards brands embrace the new luxury mind-set,” Varga said. “We are marrying content and commerce, being local, but global. We have responsible mind-sets and digital mind-sets. These are brands with universes that are beyond clothing. They are really building these luxury brands of the future based on how consumers actually shop today.

“Traditional luxury brands remain incredibly important, but there’s still this potential in us, with the aim of becoming the responsible industry leader in this new luxury segment. Vanguards Group provides the foundational framework for us, and for the other portfolio brands as well. So that we can develop further our unique selling points,” she added.

Asked whether the rebrand was a way for the group to better differentiate Aeron from Nanushka, Varga said “it’s true that we share manufacturers. But our designs require a deep and specific knowledge of sourcing and manufacturing that we have internalized, and invested in.

“We will position Aeron in the international market as a standalone Budapest-based brand. We see the brands growing parallel together,” Varga added.

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