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Founders of Matchesfashion named in New Year’s Honours list

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Matchesfashion.com co-founders Tom and Ruth Chapman have been awarded OBEs in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List for their services to the international fashion retail industry.

Commenting on the honour, Tom and Ruth Chapman said: “We are delighted to accept these awards on behalf of the many extraordinary individuals we were lucky enough to work with while founding and leading Matchesfashion.

“It brings immense pride to have been at the forefront of the changing face of retail, from the humble beginnings of one brick-and-mortar store to one of the foremost global luxury e-commerce businesses, flying the flag for Great Britain in more than 170 countries.”

The Chapmans, who founded their MatchesFashion business with a single brick-and-mortar store in Wimbledon in 1987, has grown into one of the most respected global luxury retailers, offering more than 450 established and emerging luxury designers and selling to over 176 countries worldwide.

“Throughout the growth of Matchesfashion, we have had the privilege of working with many of Britain’s most talented emerging fashion designers,” added Tom and Ruth Chapman. “The success of the business wouldn’t have been possible without them and it’s wonderful to be acknowledged for the work Matches Fashion continues to do in championing new and emerging fashion talent around the world.”

Fashion names recognised in the Queen’s 2020 New Year’s Honours list

There was also an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for Camilla Lowther, founder of management agency CLM, who was recognised for her services to British fashion and to photography, and managing director of David Nieper Limited, David Christopher Nieper, who will receive for services to UK manufacturing and to apprenticeship development.

Fashion designer and television presenter Gok Wan, who has designed collections for Sainsbury’s and Simply Yours, was named an MBE for his services to fashion and to social awareness, and said on his social media that he was “overjoyed” to receive the honour.

Graphic designer, Peter Saville, who has worked with brands including Burberry and Lacoste was named an CBE, or Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for his services to design.

Meanwhile, John Hannett, lately low pay commissioner and general Secretary of Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers received an OBE for his services to the economy.

Other notable names on the annual honour’s list which featured more than 1,000 British people includes Sir Elton John, who received the highest honour of all, Companion of Honour for his services to music and charity, while actress Olivia Newton-John was given a damehood, film directors Steve McQueen and Sam Mendes were awarded knighthoods, and broadcaster June Sarpong was named an OBE.

The awards will be handed out during the year by Queen Elizabeth II and members of the royal family.

Image: Tom and Ruth Chapman winning at the Walpole British Luxury Awards 2017, courtesy of Walpole

Gok Wan
queen’s new year honours
Ruth Chapman
Tom Chapman