Our Proud History
This philosophy was instilled by its original founders, the Late Mr. Sumer Chand Gupta and his wife, Mrs. Prem Gupta. TCG London is a small family-run business that was first established in 1975. Mr. and Mrs. Gupta embarked on a new journey with their three sons when they left India to live in the UK in 1969, with nothing but a few British Pounds to their names. Despite spending six years earning enough money in the UK to provide comfortably for the family, Mr. and Mrs. Gupta had greater aspirations and therefore decided to become self-employed in 1975. This enterprising step became the foundation for TCG London. For countless hours every day, Mrs. Gupta would make various garments such as blouses and dresses by hand from her home, for Mr. Gupta to sell the very next day. Mr. Gupta would knock on various clothing retailers’ doors in Carnaby Street and sell these garments. The couple each worked approximately 18 hours per day, seven days a week, whilst also taking care of their three children. This entrepreneurial spirit lasted for four years, until 1979 when Mr. and Mrs. Gupta had accumulated the funds to open their very first retail shop in Carnaby Street. Their entire savings had been invested into a retail unit that was no larger than a broom closet.
Years in business
Despite the small space, they ensured that every customer was given a personal shopping experience that would parallel the likes of Harrods or Selfridges. Two years later, the Gupta family was able to purchase a larger store in Carnaby Street, which appropriately was called “Supreme” (a merging of the names of “Sumer” and “Prem”). This was the family’s second retail shop.
Supreme helped provide the family’s largest retail breakthrough. Mr. and Mrs. Gupta’s eldest son, Bharat, had completed his studies and therefore joined the family business. Bharat demonstrated entrepreneurial virtuosity of his own when he decided to reach out to Pringle of Scotland in Saville Row, in order to open up a reseller account. At the time, Pringle of Scotland was only available in the most upscale retail department stores however with great fortune and belief, they granted the Gupta family an account. The partnership with Pringle of Scotland propelled the family business into a more upmarket retail operation.
In 1986, the Gupta family purchased its third retail shop in the heart of Piccadilly Circus, which was fully refurbished by Pringle of Scotland. Six years later, they purchased a fourth store in Regent Street. By this point, the Gupta family was one of the largest suppliers of cashmere knitwear and therefore the fourth shop was appropriately named “The Cashmere Gallery”. The introduction of the fourth shop also resulted in the business becoming the largest retailers of Pringle of Scotland in the world. This achievement simply wouldn’t have been possible without the resolve of every member of the family.
As the family business continued to grow, Mr. and Mrs. Gupta opened a fifth store by 1995 in the heart of Knightsbridge, also named “The Cashmere Gallery”. This became the flagship store for the entire knitwear business. By now, the business was also selling fashionable apparel from other upscale brands including Burberry, Johnstons of Elgin and Ballantyne.
At the turn of the millennium, the high-street retail trend started to take a downwards trajectory. In addition, costs for renting retail store units in such prime locations had increased astronomically. As a result, the Gupta family decided to close down their existing retail operations over time and instead, open up a single store in the heart of Covent Garden. This store provided the family with the opportunity to rebrand the business whilst celebrating its foundations. “TCG London” was born.
By 2020, it had become apparent that the lowering high-street retail trend wasn’t set to recover. This, along with the COVID-19 pandemic, made sustaining a small family-run retail store impossible. The best strategy was to pivot into an online-only business that continues to maintain the same core values that Mr. and Mrs. Gupta swore by when they opened up their first shop: you, the customer, will always be treated as a member of our family.