MILAN — Versace plans to turn attention to men's wear and Asia next year, as well as expand its jewelry and watch store format.
Gianni Versace SpA chief executive officer Giancarlo Di Risio said Tuesday that the company's goal was to make Asia its second market after Europe, replacing the U.S.
"For an international brand, America is an important market," Di Risio said. "But our growth is global....America has represented our second market after Europe. Our objective in 2008 is to put Asia into second place.''
Di Risio said the jewelry project will be a vehicle "for major growth,'' but declined to give specifics. The first jewelry and watch store opened in Rome this month. He also did not provide details on men's wear.
Di Risio dampened expectations that Versace would go public soon, despite speculation that the company could join a wave of initial public offerings — including possible listings by Prada and Ferragamo next year.
"The stock market is not a necessity for us," Di Risio said. "At the moment, we retain that Versace must grow as it is. But it could be an opportunity we look at in the medium to long term."
In addition, the company is moving its headquarters under one roof as part of a leaner, more efficient operation. This "will be the first time Versace is in a single building," Di Risio said. "And it moves us closer to our historic seat."
Spread over five floors, the 65,000-square-foot structure is a short walk from Versace's landmark atelier on Via Gesu. The home of the late founder Gianni Versace continues to house Versace's showrooms and design studios.
"Everything has been done in-house," Di Risio said, referring to the refurbishment of the new palazzo on Via Borgospesso. "This was a strategic choice and reflects the culture of Versace today."
For Di Risio, the architect of Versace's financial and administrative restructuring over the last four years, the move is more than a change of address. It represents the next step in the consolidation of the privately owned company.Di Risio said Versace expected to close this year with sales "in excess of 300 million euros," or $408 million, up from 288 million euros, or $362.9 million, last year. Dollar figures are converted from average exchange rates for the period to which they refer.
He did not give profit estimates, but said the outlook was optimistic and the company would maintain a positive cash position.
Last year, Versace posted net profits of 19.1 million euros, or $24.1 million. Cash on its balance sheet totaled 11.3 million euros, or $14.2 million.
"Today, the company is in perfect financial equilibrium," Di Risio said. "We have zero debt," by comparison with more than 120 million euros, or $149 million, in 2004.
"The coffers are in a good state," he said.
Di Risio said the phasing out of various licensed product lines and the overhaul of Versace's store network bit into first-half sales, but added that 2007 had been a good year.
"We have recovered all the turnover we lost from the license closures," Di Risio said, attributing much of that recovery to the growth of Versace's accessories division.
In 2005, accessories accounted for 4 percent of company revenue. Di Risio expected the category to generate about 40 percent this year.
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)