Executive Briefing

When Gin Lane became Pattern Brands, things got harder

After launching two brands in two years, Pattern is now focusing on acquisitions.

Pattern Brands founders
Pattern founders Emmett Shine, Suze Dowling, and Nick Ling / Photos courtesy Pattern

It’s been almost two years since Gin Lane, one of the era’s most influential branding agencies, closed down its client services business and relaunched itself as Pattern Brands, focused on creating and operating its own consumer brands “designed to help you enjoy daily life.”

This was instantly a project worth watching, both because of the talent involved and the bet itself: Could a great brand maker run its own great brands? And, with $14 million in early investment — more than you need — could this team build the next consumer product giant?

Two years in, I’d say it’s going okay — pretty well; not swimmingly, but not terribly — complete with requisite iteration and moments of startup humility, immortalized in a detailed Harvard Business School case study (an interesting read — $9 well spent!).

Pattern is still in business, and has another $60 million in financing — a combination of debt and venture capital — to work with.

But it has also only launched two brands — a much slower cadence than the launch-something-every-three-to-six-months initially planned.

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Dan Frommer

Hi, I’m Dan Frommer and this is The New Consumer, a publication about how and why people spend their time and money.

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