The Chinese powerhouse Fosun International has recently bought a majority stake in the French fashion brand Lanvin.
The purchase was announced in a statement this past Thursday. The Shanghai company owns a wide range of brands including Club Med resorts and the men’s label Caruso.
Lanvin, founded in 1899, is the oldest fashion house in France. The brand has been bought by Shaw-Lan Wang in 2001, which turned it into a global brand.
Chinese businesses are looking to expand their portfolio of luxury European brands. Back in January, it was revealed that Shandong Ruyi Group were the leading bidders for the Swiss luxury handbag company Bally. The French crystal maker Baccarat was bought by the Chinese group, Fortune Fountain Capital in June last year.
According to the firm, Bain & Co., luxury sales have grown in China by 20 percent last year, with a third of the sales coming from Chinese consumers.
Now that iPhone 6s are rolling out in China, customers are dealing with the same pocket issues western users have been having for the last month. The bulge from tight, stylish pants are becoming more prevalent. While it does deserve the hashtag “#firstworldproblems,” it doesn’t mean the concern shouldn’t be addressed.
A few weeks ago in Amsterdam, the local mobile service provider KPN, took a creative step in solving this problem. A bicycle powered mobile service offered potential iPhone 6/6+ customers the option to resize their pockets as they waited to purchase their devices. Customers temporarily traded pants for white gowns as their pockets were tailored to accommodate Apple’s new, larger phones.
China took the next step in fighting the iPhone pocket bulge. A telecom company, China Unicom, offered tailoring services to new iPhone customers. Coupled with a decorative kiosk and tailor, People’s Daily China shared some images of the setup at Shanghai’s Unicom store.
Well it’s time for a change at Rolex. Not with the aesthetic of the actual watches, but with the top of the executive committee. Newly appointed CEO Jean-Frederic Dufour will become head of Rolex, and replace Gian Riccardo Marini. The date is still to be determined, but the fact is that it’s happening. Stealing Dufour away from LVMH – Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy watch brand Zenith in an attempt to capture more global market share.
The company currently faces increased pressure from the Swatch group and Cie. Financière Richemont, who together with Rolex make up about 46 percent of the world timepiece’s sold by value. However it does lack behind Swatch in various markets that include China, so there might be the reason for this new executive.
What makes this so interesting is that Rolex is already one of the top luxury watch sellers in the world, generating estimated sales of about $5 billion dollars. Since the company is privately held they do not disclose their financial information. Chances are that their classic and world renowned Rolex designs won’t change, they just might update their younger more affordable “Tudor” brand. Tudor is now only gaining more market share compared to other median priced competitors’ products like Longines, which is made by Swatch.
In the end, Rolex itself doesn’t need to change much, they just have to adapt a little to the new trends and markets. That should do the trick, and a new CEO can give them that fresh perspective on the minute details which can be so complex (like with a Rolex).