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Fashion label ME+EM receives backing from Carphone Warehouse founder

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Kate Middleton wearing a ME+EM breton top


ME+EM, the upmarket fashion retailer favoured by The Duchess of Cambridge, is poised to receive funding from Sir Charles Dunstone and two venture capital firms.

The label, founded in 2009, has received an undisclosed investment from of consortium of backers including the Carphone Warehouse founder, Pembroke Venture Capital Trust, an off-shoot of Peter Duben’s Oakley Capital, and angel investor Venrex Fund, the Telegraph reports. The additional capital will help with the brand’s expansion plans.

The retailer has been boosted by publicity from Kate Middleton, who has been photographed in ME+EM Breton stripe tops on two separate occasions. The cobalt striped top, which retails at £48, has now accumulated a three-month waiting list with over 5,000 customers.

ME+EM is aimed at customers aged between 33 and 55 and is promoted via a small monthly magazine which founder and creative director Clare Hornby mails 250,000 copies of, per month. The brochures drive traffic to the website and flagship store in Connaught Street in London.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Clare and the team at ME+EM in what is Pembroke’s fifth investment in the apparel sector”, said Andrew Wolfson, CEO of Pembroke Venture Capital Trust. “We were impressed by the way the product resonates with their target demographic and the team’s intelligent approach to marketing and data management. We look forward to supporting the business in their growth and development.”

Pembroke Capital has previously invested in cult fashion brand Bella Freud, known for its slogan jumpers, and owns a stake in burrito bar Chilango. Venrex, which is also focused on early stage investments, has also been a backer of online retailer Notonthehighstreet.com and the range of products by make up artist Charlotte Tilbury.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Clare and the team at ME+EM in what is Pembroke’s fifth investment in the apparel sector”, said a spokesperson for the firm. "We were impressed by the way the product resonates with their target demographic and the team’s intelligent approach to marketing and data management. We look forward to supporting the business in their growth and development.”

Published on Monday 17 August by Veebs Sabharwal

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