Page last updated at 11:15 GMT, Friday, 9 October 2009 12:15 UK

Bankruptcy for designer Yamamoto

Yohji Yamamoto
Yohji Yamamoto will continue his work as a designer

Japanese clothing designer Yohji Yamamoto's fashion house has filed for bankruptcy protection in a Tokyo court.

The company said the global economic downturn had hurt sales of its upmarket clothing ranges, saddling it with debts of 6bn yen ($67m; £42m).

Under Japan's Civil Rehabilitation Law, Mr Yamamoto can keep his business afloat while restructuring takes place.

Investment firm Integral Corporation said it had signed a deal to sponsor the brand and provide a cash injection.

Mr Yamamoto has been a prominent figure in international fashion since 1981, when his distinctive black minimalist outfits were first shown on the Paris catwalk.

His daughter Limi has her own fashion range, which is also covered by the bankruptcy protection petition and restructuring deal.

Integral said it had entered into a sponsor agreement to invest in the Yohji Yamamoto and Limi Yamamoto brands.

It said it would provide the firm with capital and financing and assist with management resources.

As part of the restructuring plan, Integral's Yoshihiro Hemmi, formerly vice-president of Adidas Japan, will become chairman of the fashion house's board.

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