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Cambridge Satchel Company founder Julie Deane awarded CBE, while retail veteran Andrew Jennings receives OBE

Lauretta Roberts
12 June 2021

Cambridge Satchel Company founder Julie Deane has been awarded the CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours 2021.

Deane, who famously founded her business from her kitchen in 2008 with just £600, was recognised for services to Entrepreneurship and Manufacturing. She had already received an OBE in 2014.

The Cambridge Satchel Company started out selling one style of classic satchels in an array of colours, but has since expanded into a wider accessories offer for men and women, which are manufactured in the UK at a factory in Leicester.

Deane's brand has gone on to become a global phenomenon with her designs now available in 120 countries and a celebrity fanbase that includes Taylor Swift and Lady Gaga.

In 2014 Cambridge Satchel Company raised $21m in funding from Index Ventures and further investment was received in 2020 from Cassia Investments.

The Duchess of Cornwall and The Prince of Wales visit The Cambridge Satchel Company

The Duchess of Cornwall and The Prince of Wales visit The Cambridge Satchel Company's Leicester factory

The Leicester factory has also played host to the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, who paid a visit in February 2020.

The Prince’s Foundation is one of the good causes supported by The Cambridge Satchel Company, which also works with The Royal Opera House and The Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust (QEST) to help unearth hidden talents among young people.

Deane said of the CBE: “Supporting British manufacturing has always been at the heart of our business, so being given this honour is truly humbling. I believe the UK still has a huge wealth of untapped traditional craftsmanship and I hope we can inspire other brands to invest in UK manufacturing.”

Andrew Jennings

Global retail adviser Andrew Jennings, who has held senior roles at some of the world's best known retailers, was also awarded the OBE for services to International Trade, Fashion and Retail.

Jennings, who authored a book on retail best practice called Almost Is Not Good Enough in 2017, is a former general manager of Harrods, group CEO of House of Fraser, deputy chairman of Brown Thomas, president and CEO of Holt Renfrew, president and COO of Saks Fifth Avenue, group managing director of Woolworths in South Africa and CEO of Karstadt.

He is currently advisor and board member to international retailers, private equity organisations and consulting groups, including Ted Baker and Lion Capital Private Equity.

He has said of the OBE that he felt "very humbled for this incredible recognition".

Harris Tweed Isle of Harris proprietor Catherine Campbell also received the OBE for services to the Harris Tweed industry and the economy on the island.

Campbell grew up in a family of weavers and told The Press and Journal newspaper: "[...] although I stand to accept this honour, I feel it belongs if not equally to my family who brought me up to love the Harris Tweed Industry I live and work in today.

“Also, a very big thank you to everyone who has helped and supported us in every way throughout the years, I am eternally grateful.”

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