We started our fashion business with £150 and now it's worth millions03/19/2023
We started our fashion business with just £150 – it began with printed T-shirts and now our style empire is worth millions
- George and Mike Heaton, from Horwich, started label Represent in 2011
- Read more: Revealed: How celebrities are cashing in by selling their clothes
Two brothers have revealed how the business they set up with just £150 is now a fashion empire worth millions.
George, 29, and Mike Heaton, 32, started their streetwear luxury label Represent in 2011 in their hometown of Horwich, Greater Manchester.
After originally making their own printed t-shirts, the duo have since expanded into luxury loungewear and shoes.
Speaking to Manchester Evening News, the ambitious brothers explained how their business is now worth millions and will shortly be available to shop in Selfridges.
George said: ‘It doesn’t feel like we’re trying to sell clothes to anyone because people just get it.
Pictured: George Heaton. The brothers live and work together in Horwich, and are building their dream headquarters there
George, 29, and Mike Heaton, 32, originally from Horwich, started their streetwear luxury label Represent in Bolton in 2011, when they were respectively 18 and 21. Pictured: the brothers styling a model on a photoshoot
‘I started on the basis of making my own clothes, things that I would want to wear, in the most luxurious fabrics they can be, but at an affordable price point.’
The brand’s collection covers all the streetwear basics, with prices for their graphic tees ranging in price from £60 to £100, while their sweaters go from £110 to £140.
The pair grew up in Bolton and went on to study graphic design at Runshaw College in Leyland, and later the University of Salford.
Aged 18, George printed some of the graphic T-shirts he and his brother imagined for a college project, and the idea behind Represent was born.
The pair began to advertising their brand on Instagram, catching the attention of celebs like Justin Bieber, who wore the brand on his UK tour.
Strong of this initial success, George said this organic way of advertising heard Represent a strong, loyal following online.
In 2019, he revealed that the brand was turning over £8million, and had goals to reach £10m, but saw their profits plateau.
The label’s popularity exploded with the Coronavirus pandemic, as more customers turned to online shopping during lockdown.
The brand’s collection covers all the streetwear basics, with prices for their graphic tees ranging in price from £60 to £100, while their sweaters go from £110 to £140. Pictured: a Represent sweater, priced at £140
Mike, the oldest of the two brothers. The brand started advertising on Instagram in 2011, and the business blew up in 2020. The pair share snaps of their outfits on their social media
George revealed that the brand took advantage of the fact people were at home and spending more time online than ever to launch products every week to reach out to more customers.
Now, Flannels, END, Harrods, Browns and Harvey Nichols all stock the brand and the brothers claim their business is now worth millions.
The pair, who are proud of their partnerships in the UK and the US plan to expand globally in the coming years and allow the customers who discovered them online to experience what Represent is about physically as well.
George and Mike are about to release a collaboration with the Motley Crue in Los Angeles, with the line’s launch party taking place at the iconic club the Viper Room.
Pictured: Mike working on pictures for Represent’s online presence. The brothers started their business on social media in the 2010s
The duo is also eying home products and beauty lines in the future.
The brand is based in Horwich, where the duo employ 60 members of staff and plan to hire an extra 40 by the end of 2023.
They are also busy building Represent’s dream offices, which will include a chef and a 6,000sqm gym for their staff.
The two brothers, who document their regular visits to the gym on their personal Instagram account say a healthy lifestyle is part of the ethos of their brand, and want to encourage their staff to join in.
Meanwhile, the pair are still living together in a shared house in Horwich, but admit they have very different schedules.
The brothers are happy to have created their brand together, and admit the whole business feels like a big family, with some of their collaborators having been involved in the brand since its early days.
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