- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 3, 2009

NEW YORK

KP Fashion Co., the company set up by the father of 16-year-old Russian fashion designer Kira Plastinina to sell her clothes in the U.S., filed for bankruptcy seven months after opening its first store.

Los Angeles-based KP Fashion sought protection from creditors while it liquidates. The company, which said last month it would close almost all of its 12 stores, listed $9.7 million in assets and $54.4 million in debt in papers filed Dec. 31 in U.S. bankruptcy court in Manhattan.

Miss Plastinina’s father, Sergei Plastinin, has said he spent $80 million to set up stores for his daughter. The entrepreneur co-founded OAO Wimm-Bill-Dann, Russia’s biggest dairy company, and has investments in real estate, agriculture and fertilizer businesses. Miss Plastinina has 70 stores in Russia, which aren’t included in the Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing.

“I’ve been working really hard, and am very proud of myself for keeping my determination and being able to work and accomplish so much at my young age,” Miss Plastinina said on a MySpace page linked to the company’s U.S. Web site, before the bankruptcy filing.

KP Fashion’s biggest creditor, with a $29.9 million loan, is Lendero Ltd., a Cyprus company controlled by Mr. Plastinin, according to U.S. regulatory filings.

Miss Plastinina’s company, whose hot-pink signature logo features two hearts, offered jeans, T-shirts, dresses, pants, shoes and accessories.

The company’s U.S. Web site shows most of the clothes at a 75 percent discount. A shiny black, quilted lacquer mini skirt that sold for $54 is listed as on sale for $13.50.

The first U.S. Kira Plastinina outlet opened in Manhattan in May, and the chain had 11 other stores in California, Connecticut, Nevada and New Jersey - with another two ready to open. Besides Russia, there are 10 outlets in Ukraine and five in Kazakhstan.

The case is In re KP Fashion Co., 08-15233, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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