Founded by 1856 by Thomas Burberry, a 21-year-old former draper’s apprentice, Burberry Prorsum is today a deluxe British-owned fashion corporation, popular for its clothing, fragrances and fashion accessories. The brand’s distinctive tartan pattern, a type of plaid pattern, has become one of its most widely copied trademarks of all time including the Burberry Equestrian Knight Logo with the Latin word “Prorsum”, (def: forwards) developed in 1901. In 1911 the brand became the outfitters for Roald Amundsen, the first man to reach the South Pole, and Ernest Shackleton, who led a 1914 expedition to cross Antarctica. A Burberry gabardine jacket was worn by George Mallory on his ill-fated attempt on Mount Everest in 1924. In 1914 Burberry was commissioned by the War Office to adapt its officer’s coat to suit the conditions of contemporary warfare, resulting in the “trench coat”. After the war, the trench coat became popular with civilians.
The iconic Burberry black, white, red and tan check was created in the 1920s and used as a lining in its trench coats. Today, the Burberry Prorsum brand is well-known for using British celebrities in its advertising, including models Kate Moss, and most recently actress Emma Watson, who was named the face of Burberry’s 2009 Fall/Winter campaign. Burberry accrued sales of $1.125 billion in 2009, 25% of which resulted from the American market