Richemont Asia Sales Rebound, Offsetting Weak U.S. Sales
Richemont reported sales growth of 19% at constant exchange rates in the first 2023 business quarter. The company saw substantial increases in sales in APAC, up 40%, with double-digit growth in mainland China and triple digits in Hong Kong and Macau, while sales decreased in the Americas, down 2%, due to fears of a prolonged luxury downturn in the region. By category, jewelry saw the strongest increase, leading the way with 24%, with sales of watches growing by 10%. Sales in Europe grew by 11% thanks to resilient domestic demand and increases in tourist spending. Japan saw a 14% increase, while the Middle East increased by 14%. The US slowdown is expected to continue as rising inflation rates and a lingering recession causes aspirational luxury consumers to limit their spending.
Zegna Appoints Former LVMH Lelio Gavazza to Lead Tom Ford
Following the appointment of Peter Hawkings as Creative Director, Lelio Gavazza joins from LVMH and has been appointed as new CEO of Tom Ford Fashion. He previously held key regional leadership roles at Bulgari including Managing Director of Greater China, Managing Director EMEA and most recently, Executive Vice President of Sales and Retail. Estée Lauder Companies acquired Tom Ford last November for $2.8 billion with ready-to-wear produced under license by the Ermenegildo Zegna Group.
Marco Bizzarri Leaves Gucci
Longtime President and CEO of Gucci, Marco Bizzarri, will step down from his position in September. Bizzarri has been leading Gucci since 2015 and had been a member of Kering’s executive committee since 2012. He played a key role in Gucci’s outstanding growth strategy, but the brand has been struggling recently. Kering is in transition to relaunch its mega-brand and regain sales growth. As part of the executive reshuffle, Francesca Bellettini, president and CEO of Saint Laurent since 2013, has also been appointed as the new deputy CEO in charge of brand development, while Jean-Marc Duplaix will be deputy CEO in charge of operation and finance, and Jean-François Palus will be acting as President and CEO of Gucci for this transitional period.
Harrods Opens Club Dedicated to High-Net-Worth Individuals in China
Harrods will open a new private members club in Shanghai, the first outside of the UK, to leverage the robust demand of ultra-wealthy Chinese consumers. The new club will be called The Residence and will open on the second floor of Cha House in central Shanghai, with a starting membership number limited to 250. The club will house Gordon Ramsay’s first restaurant in the city as well allow members the opportunity to collect rare bottles of alcohol through Harrods’ partnership with premier Scottish whisky company Edrington Group. Chinese customers accounted for 16% of Harrods’ sales last year.
Valentino Releases Digital Outfits in Partnership with Meta
Created in partnership with social media company Meta, Valentino released an assortment of special-branded digital avatar outfits to the platform’s avatar store. The avatar looks can be used across a variety of platforms, including Instagram, Facebook and Messenger, as well as in the metaverse, via Horizon Worlds, Meta’s metaverse. Releasing digital versions of pieces from its Toile Iconographe and Pink PP lines, the company is embracing the latest in culture and technology through digital engagement. Valentino is planning to release a secondary drop, also in partnership with Meta.
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