Burch v. Burch Is Finally Over

At least one of 2012's biggest fashion beefs has already been laid to rest in 2013. Tory and Chris Burch have reached an agreement, putting an end to a messy, drawn-out lawsuit.
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At least one of 2012's biggest fashion beefs has already been laid to rest in 2013. Tory and Chris Burch have reached an agreement, putting an end to a messy, drawn-out lawsuit.
Photo: Getty

Photo: Getty

At least one of 2012's biggest fashion beefs has already been laid to rest in 2013.

Tory and Chris Burch have reached an agreement, putting an end to a messy, drawn-out lawsuit initiated by Chris Burch, over the sale of his stake in the Tory Burch company, WWD is reporting. To recap: Chris accused Tory of tortious interference with the sale process--meaning essentially that Tory was making it hard for Chris to sell his stake in the company for a fair price--as well as breach of contract. Tory Burch denied all claims and countersued over the perceived similarities between his new C.Wonder brand and Tory Burch.

While terms of the deal are confidential, Chris still owns a stake in Tory Burch and two new investors have also been brought on: BDT Capital Partners LLC and General Atlantic LLC made minority investments in the brand.

“They are completely aligned with our long-term approach to building our brand and share our vision for growth globally,” chief executive officer Tory Burch said of the new minority investors.

According to WWD, both BDT and General Atlantic said they see strong growth opportunities in the lifestyle brand. Bill Ford, CEO of General Atlantic, which has invested in companies such as Gilt Groupe, Facebook, and Alibaba Group, said that "As a long-term partner to great management teams, General Atlantic helps propel exceptional companies to their next phase of growth."

Could the next phase of growth include an IPO for Tory Burch? It's something that's been rumored for a while, and now that the company is no longer entangled in a messy lawsuit it seems even more likely.

As for Chris, don't expect him to be out of the picture entirely. While a spokesperson declined to say how much he still owned of the company (in 2003 he owned a 28.3 percent stake), Chris said he will stay on as a "significant investor" and that he's “confident” in the New York-based brand’s “continued success."