image: Stella McCartney

Kering and Stella McCartney are ending their 17-year partnership, with the British design behind agreeing to buys back the 50 percent owned by the French luxury goods conglomerate, as the companies confirmed on Wednesday. They did not disclose financial terms for the deal, while WWD confirmed that McCartney “has a long-standing clause in her contract giving her the option to re-purchase Kering’s stake, exercisable by March 31 of this year.”

McCartney, who launched her London based label in 2001 partnership with Kering after she left her position as creative director of French brand Chloe, “said buying out Kering and developing a stand-alone business was an opportunity she couldn’t turn down,” per WWD. The brand, itself, which maintains 51 brick-and-mortar outposts in cities, including London, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Dubai, Milan, Shanghai and newly opened stores including Florence, Paris and New York, is known largely for its commitment to ban leather or fur from all of its wares.

François-Henri Pinault, chairman and chief executive officer of Kering, which acquired 50 percent of McCartney’s company in 2001, said in a statement on Wednesday, “It is the right time for Stella to move to the next stage. Kering is a luxury group that empowers creative minds and helps disruptive ideas become reality. I am extremely proud of what Kering and Stella McCartney have accomplished together since 2001. I would like to thank Stella and her team wholeheartedly for everything they have brought to Kering – far beyond business. Stella knows she can always count on my friendship and support.”