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The End or a Fresh New Start? Designer Bunmi Olaye exits the label she founded – Bunmi Koko



Bunmi Olaye formerly of Bunmi Koko with Omotola

We received an interesting press release today from PR representatives of UK-based Nigerian label, Bunmi Koko.
Creative Director and Co-Founder of the label, Bunmi Olaye has decided to step down as creative director. This is a unique situation for the African fashion scene though it happens more regularly on the international fashion scene where investors and shareholders often hold joint rights to the trademarks. It will be great to find out the reason behind this move.

Read the Press Release below;

Bunmi Olaye, London-based Nigerian designer and Creative Director behind the fashion brand Bunmi Koko has decided to step down from her position with the company she created with Francis Udom in 2009.

In two years, the brand has been catapulted in the limelight and won many international accolades including ‘Emerging Designer of the Year in 2010’ at the African Fashion Awards, ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ 2010 and has been featured in magazines and newspapers such as Drapers, Evening Standard, Grazia, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Arise & Vogue. Bunmi Koko caught the eyes of many celebrities such as Nelson Mandela, Hilary Alexander of The Telegraph & former Spice Girls Melanie Brown to name a few.

Bunmi Koko has also been invited by HRH The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall to attend a reception at St James’s Palace, celebrating West African culture in July this year and then went on to be commissioned by ITN to give ‘expert commentary’ on the wedding gown worn by HRH Catherine Middleton, The Duchess of Cambridge, on the ITV Royal Wedding Coverage during the day of HRH Prince William and Duchess Catherine Middleton’s Royal Wedding.

Bunmi Olaye is not quitting fashion but moving onto new horizons and is currently working new projects: ‘I have not giving up on my dream, however the time has come for me to pursue a vision that is entirely my own‘. Bunmi Olaye

No further information will be released of yet as for the reasons behind Bunmi’s resignation, but all
can rest assured to find out more about it in the near future.


  1. Ayana

    December 6, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Wishing her the very best

  2. bukioni

    December 6, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    That’s a bold move for Bunmi. Looking forward to seeing her new projects, I’m a huge fan of her work. Wishing her all the best in her future endeavours.

  3. lol

    December 6, 2011 at 5:20 pm

    Wishing her all the best. But from a business perspective, she has a broader horizon, for whatever reason she may have stepped down, sometimes its good to go that way, she might hire a new CD and still remain on board of the Fashion House she created or a buyout altogether.

    Today, there are so many int’l labels out there with the names in place but the CDs are hired by the Fashion House e.g Dior, Givenchy, Gucci, AMcQ to mention a few, a good example is Tom Ford who has worked for quite a few of the Fashion Houses before going it alone.
    I know someone who is currently doing the same, she is the owner of the label but has hired the CD (London College of Fashion) for the label- its the way forward (not saying its ideal in most situations but sometimes necessary).
    My comments here are detached from her reasons of stepping down, just an insight.

    Wishing her all the best for the future.

  4. naveah

    December 6, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    LOVE the dress! Omotola cannot accessorize if her life depends on it! One or the other girl…big earrings or big necklace NOT both in tandem.

  5. @Chizoba

    December 7, 2011 at 1:09 am

    Love her designs can’t wait what else she has install

  6. deeba

    December 7, 2011 at 2:01 am

    isn’t it almost obvious?

    • kenks

      December 7, 2011 at 1:54 pm


    • Nneka

      December 9, 2011 at 4:34 pm

      …isn’t it obvious that we can’t crawl into Deeba’s mind to answer her question.

  7. U

    December 7, 2011 at 11:13 am

    Guess. She fell out with her partner, boyfriend , fiancee …sigh business shouldn’t be mixed with pleasure at all. Kudos to her for being bold enough to start over.

    • partyrider

      December 7, 2011 at 8:04 pm

      …and you know business was mixed with pleasure because…? hmm..smh

  8. New skool!

    December 7, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    the end of Bunmi Koko as Bunmi was the creative force behind it all!! LONG LIVE BUNMI OLAOYE….

    • Dee-USA

      December 7, 2011 at 5:42 pm

      She went to my secondary school for a couple of years and I remember her as Bunmi Olaye. Which one be Olaoye now?

    • Peaches

      December 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm

      I agree ex-alumnite. She was my senior. Met her a year ago on the Tube (Underground) She was soo down to earth and humble. I really do wish her the best. Na Olaye not Olaoye.LOL.

  9. Demmy

    December 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    I’m like totally shocked right now because yesterday I watched her on Studio 53 Extra and was still commenting on her designs. Wishing her the best.

  10. godwin udom

    December 8, 2011 at 1:14 am

    wishing dem a joyful journey ahead but biz is biz and love is love

  11. asake

    December 8, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    Erm dee, It was Olaoye as far as I remember.
    I know Bunmi will go on to do big things, she was always creative right from high school I remeber she was one of the favourite students in the Fine Art class. She has already started another label Eagle & Thistle and one of the dresses won a Brand Alley competition.
    More to come from this girl. All the best for the future Bunmi. X

    • Dee-USA

      December 8, 2011 at 7:24 pm

      Asake, not to make it a big deal, but you are wrong. It was always Olaye. I think I know who you are though. The designer right? Anyways, you can go back and confirm it.

  12. Peaches

    December 8, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    @ Asake, where you at the Yetty D fashion show on Saturday? Had a quick blast from the past chat about going to the same skool etc.

  13. deeba

    December 9, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    @ U… you are very smart 🙂
    @kenks…keep asking there

  14. 'Dayo

    December 15, 2011 at 4:56 pm

    My beautiful AFCS alumni!!! lol…. Asake Oge (is this Folake Agoro?)
    Its “Olaye” na, have u forgotten so soon? Well possibly cos it’s about 15yrs now…:)

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