Geoff Travis was traveling in North America and amassed a huge record collection as he moved from coast to coast. He then shipped these records back to the UK which became the basis of the Rough Trade Shop. The label grew out of the Rough Trade Shop, founded by Travis in west London in 1976. The label was set up in 1978 and also went into the distribution business, distributing amongst others "Joey Parratt's" first band The Flying Brix. It became independent from the shop in 1982, then went bankrupt in 1991, ruining quite a few smaller record labels to which money was owed. Rough Trade was relaunched in 2000.