MILAN (AP) - Costume National creative director Ennio Capasa has stepped down following the takeover of the brand by its Japanese partner, Sequedge.

MILAN (AP) Costume National creative director Ennio Capasa has stepped down following the takeover of the brand by its Japanese partner, Sequedge.

Capasa's surprise departure from the company he founded in 1986 was announced Tuesday. A press statement said the deal allows Capasa and his brother Carlo Capasa, who was Costume National's CEO, "to immediately pursue new collaborations across a wider international spectrum."

The brothers described the move as "bittersweet," adding, "we hope that the future continues to hold even greater success for the brand and Sequedge." They said they planned new ventures, but did not provide details.

There was no hint of an impending transition during the most recent runway show during Milan Fashion Week two weeks ago.