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Opinion

The bet of an inclusive luxury

Cristina D’Agostino

By Cristina D’Agostino22 juillet 2021

This week LVMH announced the acquisition of a 60% stake in the Off-White brand created by star designer Virgil Abloh. Was this just another brand in the world's largest luxury group's extensive portfolio? In reality, LVMH is signing a contract that goes much further than Off-White's commercial operations, which are actually owned by Farfetch via the purchase of New Guards Group (source: Vogue.com). Bernard Arnault has given himself a much larger treasure: Virgil Abloh's creativity, which goes far beyond the fashion sector, since the Louis Vuitton artistic director is also prolific in music and art.

But it is also and above all his ability to understand the evolution of the luxury sector, and to know how to translate, better than anyone else, the values of inclusion, social progress and innovation into a luxury product. This is the key to ensuring that luxury continues to be attractive to future generations, and to finding new territories of expression for luxury. LVMH is anticipating the movement. And what are the other groups doing? For the past four years, Kering has embarked on what it calls the "2017-2025 roadmap" based on the three pillars of "Care, Collaborate, Create", which open the doors to inclusion and innovation. His brand Gucci and the Gucci Equilibrium project symbolise these visions.

And what about the watch industry, led by the Richemont and Swatch groups? The sector is sorely lacking in visionaries capable of taking watchmaking and jewellery into new territory, as the failure of the connected watch proves. The gap in visions is widening between groups focused on fashion and those focused on watchmaking and jewellery. There is an urgent need for awareness and above all an embodiment of the values of social progress at the head of these groups and brands.

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