Forget the same-old, same-old business model in which luxury groups had total control over their brands: The new ecosystem model will require a confederation of partnerships and alliances.
According to a research report from The Boston Consulting Group on “Luxury Ecosystems: Controlling Your Brand While Letting It Go,” the new confederation that’s assembled and united by a shared vision for the brand’s future will help reduce the risks and costs of innovation as well as the challenges of scale faced by many luxury brands.
Jean-Marc Bellaiche, BCG’s global leader in the Luxury, Fashion and Beauty sectors, said, “We live in a ‘Wiki world.’ Everything is open.”
He said that social and digital media have served as a catalyst for change, forcing luxury brands to give up some control as consumers become part of the ecosystem. One example is Facebook, where consumers can voice an opinion about a brand, without branded firms having any control over what is being posted. RELATED CONTENT: WWD Research Roundup >>
In the new ecosystem, brands will continue to be influenced by consumer wants and wishes, but they’ll have to move fast to adapt to changing preferences.
Gucci is exploring new raw materials such as biomaterials and high-gravity plastics. Giorgio Armani and Kering are using Yoox Group’s Yoox.com Web site to manage many of their e-commerce sites, while Ralph Lauren and Compagnie Financière Richemont have a long-term joint venture where each has an equal share in the design and creation of luxury watches and fine jewelry.
“The growth plan for most players will be new geographies, new categories, new channels and new technologies. New, new, new. Companies can’t master everything in-house and working with a partner is more urgent now than it was 10 years ago,” Bellaiche said, adding that growth for the future requires a completely different skill set than before.
When thoughtfully planned out, brands that can pull in the right partnerships and alliances — whether for expertise in a geographic location or digital medium not available in-house — will see growth in new market categories and market locations. These arrangements will have each party putting something at stake for the grand vision of the brand in hopes of greater gains later on, with incentives increasing for both sides as the ecosystem evolves, according to Bellaiche.
According to BCG’s calculations, Europe, Japan and the U.S. will grow about 2 to 6 percent a year through 2015, while the growth rate for new markets will be 15 to 20 percent. Growth in areas such as China, India, Indonesia, Russia and Vietnam also require networks to adjust to the local preferences, as well as meet regulatory requirements in that specific marketplace. BCG also said that to be a relevant global brand, annual volume should be $1 billion and it’s even better if closer to the $2 billion level.
@fearofgod and @maxfieldla have teamed up on a pop-up installation. The store, located in the gallery space across from Maxfield’s Melrose Ave location, is the site of the brand’s House of God pop-up in which Fear of God founder @jerrylorenzo has created a church-inspired installation. A dozen vintage church pews sit in front of an LED screen playing 90s gospel singers in an effort to re-create an environment akin to a Southern Baptist Church, Lorenzo explained. Read more about the pop-up on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Jennifer Johnson)
Known for his sleek, sophisticated American glamour, Norman Norell is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at @fitnyc. “Norell: Dean of American Fashion,” which runs from February 9 through April 14, will feature approximately 100 ensembles and accessories. His best work is exemplified by the designer’s glittering “mermaid” gowns frosted with thousands of hand-sewn sequins – like the one pictured. (📷: William Helburn) #wwdfashion
For pre-fall 2018, @balmain didn’t let go of the glitz. A crystal embroidered baseball jacket priced at around $40,000 hangs in the “couture” section of the brand’s first men’s pre-collection. Sporting the words “Balmain Army” across the back, the item took around two months to make. “When it was completed, it was like Christmas, it was like, ‘It’s done, it’s exactly what I wanted,’” said Balmain’s creative director @olivier_rousteing during a tour of the collection in a Paris showroom on Monday. #wwdfashion
Eighty degree temperatures and outdoor installations at the annual Art Basel Miami Beach called for bright, elevated beachwear. See more street style pictures on WWD.com. #theyarewearing #ABMB (📷: @lifeinreverie)
Following September’s emotional tribute to her brother Gianni, Donatella Versace wanted to bring the spring show’s deep sense of intimacy to her @versace_official pre-fall collection. Donatella found inspiration in Versace Palazzo in Milan and from Gianni’s opulent apartment. Archival patterns and new motifs were splashed on silk shirtdresses and fitted jersey frocks. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com. #wwdfashion
Demna Gvasalia continues to shake up the Paris fashion calendar — and experiment with new runway timetables for his @vetements_official brand. WWD has learned that Vetements plans to stage its next coed show for the fall 2018 season on January 19 during Men’s Fashion Week in the French capital. Details about the timing and venue have not been confirmed — stay tuned on WWD.com to catch the latest. #wwdnews (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo)
@zacposen's go-to holiday gift? Cookies! "I'll usually bake cookies and send them as a gift," said the designer, who recently released his cookbook "Cooking With Zac: Recipes from Rustic to Refined." Get the recipe for his Brown Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies via link in bio 🍪🍪🍪 #wwdeye #cookingwithzac
For @monsemaison’s pre-fall 2018 collection, Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim honed in on the brand’s many signatures — men’s wear, which was tweaked and feminized through deconstruction, proportion play and lots of bare shoulders. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
On Friday night, @yohjiyamamotoofficial received the Design for Asia Lifetime Achievement Award in Hong Kong. The 75-year-old designer has been celebrated for many years and is best known for his dark and avant-garde tailoring. “In my long career, in design, architecture, [I’ve been to] so many parties, this is the very first time that I have such a warm feeling, I really appreciate this,” Yamamoto said. #wwdfashion (📷: @dominiquemaitre)