Akira Defects After David Jones Sex Scandal

Designer Akira Isogawa is expected to defect from David Jones following the sexual harassment scandal that has recently embroiled the department store.

Isogawa’s label which has been stocked in DJs for over a decade, showed his support for Myer as he sat front row at the rival store’s collection launch last night. The designer phoned Myer yesterday to request a ticket to the show just two days after he sat front row at the DJs collection launch.

It has been reported that Isogawa had been in discussion with Myer’s director of apparel and accessories Judy Coomber in recent months, following his discontent towards how DJs was promoting and handling his own brand. Though it seems this latest scandal has only hurried proceedings.

“I feel compassionate about what happened to her,” Isogawa said. “It was horrific what happened to her.”

The designer’s defection will be a major blow for the department store as it faces up to $37 million in damages, as former DJs publicist Kristy Fraser-Kirk launches a claim against the store and its former chief executive Mark McInness for sexual harassment charges.

With such high-profile support, it begs the question of how many other designers will follow suit…

UPDATE 09/08/10 Akira will not be leaving David Jones. Today he released a statement to explain his attendance at the Myer show:

“I attended a Myer function and didn’t realise the implications of my attendance until I arrived,” Isogawa said.

“I am very committed to my relationship with David Jones and apologise for any confusion my decision to attend the Myer function may have caused. We enjoy a successful exclusive partnership with David Jones and they have been incredibly supportive over the past 10 years.”

Update via Ragtrader