Scott Devon, whose father founded the frozen garlic bread company Cole's Quality Foods, has spent the past two decades investing millions of dollars in a variety of the most expensive pursuits imaginable. First there was polo (he became a part owner of the Catamount team in 2004), then race cars (his firm's car broke lap records in 2009), and now watches: His company's Thread 1 timepiece features a mysterious treadmill-like belt technology made by an aerospace company and retails for $15,000 (see, he even managed to work in space travel, sort of!). So this month he did what anyone with a couple extra hundred million dollars in the bank would do: throw a huge party with lots of models and socialites to launch a full-scale fashion label named after himself.
The party took place earlier this month. Sam Ronson D.J.'d while Nicky Hilton, Whitney Port, and Nicolette Sheridan trooped into Devon's car showroom turned retail store, a 10,000-square-foot affair called Devon Works in Beverly Hills. Even WWD can't take Devon seriously, noting, "Whether out of brazenness, naïveté, arrogance, stupidity or a combination, Devon leaps into new businesses with going-for-the-gold gusto." The profile continues:
“I’ve invested millions up to this point,” said Devon, who is unsure of precisely when a return will be realized. “I think the watch could even carry the brand this year, so its nice to have one hit, but we haven’t even showed the rest. We have major people behind us that know how to build brands and promote brands, so it is not like we have a lack of expertise on our end. So, I think we have a good shot.”
Devon has hired a few fashion industry insiders to help him start his brand, most notably Meadow Hochfelder, who has worked with Donna Karan and Rachel Roy. He's also enlisted custom leather-maker Agatha Blois and designer Keith Lissner. Devon admits that not everything he touches turns to gold, but he's not that worried about it.
Back in 1995, he had his mind set on introducing fine gourmet bread to Grand Rapids residents with the Saint-Honoré French Bakery and Tea Room. They weren’t exactly storming the doors. “That didn’t work financially, but I look at it like we made some of the world’s best bread...Not everything you do works financially, but you can be happy creatively.”