Fashion Cafe + Tommaso Buti + charged with fraud
The Associated Press called the chain “a couture version of Planet Hollywood and the Hard Rock Cafe.”
The chain first opened in Rockefeller Center, New York City in 1995. On Monday May 6, 1996, construction began on the London branch of the chain.
The London and New York locations became the primary locations of Fashion Cafe.
Fashion Cafe encountered difficulties from the beginning. Matt Haig, author of Brand Failures, said that “The connection between models and food was not an obvious one, and ‘fashion’ was not a theme that made people feel hungry.”
Once the chain encountered difficulties, Campbell and MacPherson accused Tomasso Buti of stealing $25 million after asking the two to invest in the chain.
Schiffer withdrew from the venture, blaming old issues with Campbell. The Rockefeller Center Fashion Cafe closed in 1998.
On December 11, 2000 the Federal Government of the United States filed charges against the founders, accusing them of conspiracy, fraud, and money laundering.