Jimmy Choo is a brand that produces high end, luxurious accessories, but mostly focuses on shoes. Datuk Jimmy Choo Yeang Keat is the founder of the Jimmy Choo brand. Datuk Jimmy Choo Yeang Keat was born in Malaysia, but currently resides in the United Kingdom where he started the Jimmy Choo brand. Choo was born into a family of shoemakers. His father taught him how to make shoes at a very young age and he started to excel in his craft.
Choo attended college at the Cordwainers Technical College in Hackney and graduated in 1983. After graduating, Choo rented out an old hospital building and opened up a shop where he could display his craftsmanship and personal creativity by selling his own shoes. His skills and designs did not go unnoticed as his works were displayed in the popular fashion magazine, Vogue. Choo even got recognition and support from the Princess of Wales, Diana in 1990. Choo’s work was popularized very quickly and with the help from the British Vogue fashion magazine accessories editor, Tamara Mellon, they founded Jimmy Choo Ltd. in 1996.
The business was very successful, but Choo decided to sell his half of the company for 10 million British pounds, which is nearly 13 million US dollars. Since then, he has focused his work on an exclusive Jimmy Choo couture line of shoes. Jimmy Choo branched off from its origins of making shoes, and started producing accessories such as handbags, wallets, belts, glasses, perfume, cologne, scarves, and hats. Jimmy Choo became known as a top of the line brand and it is worn frequently on the red carpet by Hollywood stars. Jimmy Choo has become known as a favorite among celebrities and this has been a huge contribution to Jimmy Choo’s rapid expansion.
The first Jimmy Choo store was opened in London, but since then, they have expanded their locations to some of the most recognizable shopping locations all over the world. These destinations include: Madison Avenue in New York, Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, Sloane Street and Bond Street in London, Avenue Montaigne in Paris, Via Condotti in Rome, and Ginza in Tokyo.
Datuk Jimmy Choo Yeang Keat’s niece, Sandra Choi was enthralled in the fashion business growing up, and followed the footsteps of her Uncle. She attended the prestigious college, Central St. Martins School and earned her degree in fashion. She learned everything about shoe making, designing, and business. Sandra Choi took in a lot from Jimmy Choo and soon became the company’s creative director. Due to her hard work ethic, the Jimmy Choo brand received many awards such as the 2008 'Designer Brand of the Year' from the British Fashion Council, the 2008 ‘ACE Brand of the Year' from the Accessory Council and the 2008 'Brand of the Year' from footwear news in New York.
As of now, Jimmy Choo is one of the most successful and well known people to ever come out of Malaysia, and overall is one of the most popular fashion designers in the world.
Location: Napa Valley, California.