Ermenegildo Zegna announced on August 28 it has reached an agreement with private equity Sandbridge Capital to buy a majority stake in insurgent American fashion label Thom Browne. Valued at US$500 million, the deal is said to confirm the rising popularity of small brands and high-end casual wear.

New York based designer, Thom Browne, is to hold the label’s remaining 15% stake and to maintain his current role as the brand’s Chief Creative Officer.

Founded in 2001, the American high-end label has a wide collection of leather goods, accessories and footwear for both men and women.