LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton has gone from a perennial fan of Kate and Laura Mulleavy’s Rodarte to a potential investor.
The French luxury conglomerate and the American brand have held on-and-off discussions about an acquisition since spring, although recently the talks have trailed off, according to market sources. They stressed no deal is in the works.
Speculation about a possible connection between the two has come up time and again, especially around New York Fashion Week.
Pierre-Yves Roussel, chief executive officer of LVMH’s fashion division, was once again sitting in the front row at the Rodarte fall show in February. Roussel was coy about his presence at the time and would only say, “We still love what they do.”
Neither Rodarte nor LVMH could be reached for comment by press time Thursday.
Rodarte would be an atypical acquisition for LVMH, which has recently shown scant interest in adding to its fashion portfolio. A recent exception was its 49 percent investment in Edun last year, which was considered more symbolic given Edun’s ethical slant and famous founders: rocker Bono and his wife, Ali Hewson.
LVMH, parent to Fendi, Givenchy and Pucci, as well as cosmetics, spirits and retail brands, tends to prefer heritage fashion brands rather than upstart designer labels.
The luxury giant has focused on organic growth in recent years, making only select investments in nonfashion properties. In 2008, LVMH bought controlling stakes in watch firm Hublot, yacht maker Feadship and Champagne house Montaudon.
The Mulleavys’ ethereal designs have succeeded in drawing critical praise, a fervent following and major awards. The pair won the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Awards fashion design category in July, and last year reeled in the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s Womenswear Designer of the Year award.
Still, the brand is more about buzz and fashion cachet than financial pop. Sources estimated Rodarte has annual revenues shy of $2 million and has incurred losses. Last winter, the brand had a limited edition line at Target.
EXCLUSIVE: Two and half months after John Targon, cofounder and codesigner of Baja East, was hired as creative director of the contemporary division at Marc Jacobs, he has left the company, WWD has learned. Marc Jacobs International, which is owned by LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, confirmed Targon’s departure in a statement: “John Targon is a talented designer and we appreciate the work he has done here. Ultimately working together did not make sense for the brand and we wish him the best.” Read the story by @jessiredale, link in bio. #wwdnews
@theluxurycollection is officially launching a collection, tapping Sofia Sanchez de Betak for the capsule. Over 30 styles will be featured in the Chufy x The Luxury Collection, debuting next month at Bergdorf Goodman, The Webster, FiveStory and more. De Betak, known as “@chufy,” drew inspiration for the collection from her trips to Japan in the past year #wwdfashion
@lhd, founder and CEO of @thewebster, has teamed up with @lebonmarcherivegauche for the European launch of her ready-to-wear line, LHD. The launch will come with an exclusive pop-up opening today that’s set to run through May 20. Located on the second floor, it carries her debut Miami-themed resort collection, launched in November as see-now-buy-now. #wwdfashion
@longchamp, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, just opened its biggest U.S. store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. On the lower level there’s a floor-to-ceiling display of the brand’s iconic Le Pliage bag – in all of its different colors, shapes and sizes. Customers can also have their product personalized in-store by imprinting names, initials or emblems. #wwdfashion (📷: @ericmtownsend)
“Whenever I’m in that place of sound and music, I don’t have fear or nervousness…This album has a lot of themes of courage and boldness and I want to be the soundtrack for people’s lives. I’ll be so happy if [my songs] evoke strength in people, which I know music has done for me,” says @kimbramusic of her newest album “Primal Heart.” The New Zealand-born singer sat down with WWD to talk about her music, newest tour and connecting with hear fans — read more on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
Luxury handbag resale company @rebagofficial is planning to sell a rare collectible for $70,000: the @hermes White Crocodile Himalayan Birkin. The exclusive Birkin sold for about $100,000 in 2008, when @davidbeckham bought one for his wife @victoriabeckham to add to her collection. Read more about the rare Birkin on WWD.com #wwdaccessories
With her costume pearl necklace and what-you-see-is-what-you-get style, Barbara Bush, who died Tuesday at age 92, was a straight-shooter from start to finish.
Born Barbara Pierce in New York City, Bush served as the 37th first lady, as well as the country’s second lady from 1981 to 1989. In addition to being part of the longest presidential marriage — 73 years — Bush also had the unlikely distinction of having one son, George W., become the 43rd president and another son, Jeb, run unsuccessfully in 2016. Having served as second lady during the Reagan administration’s two terms and lived all over the world during her own husband’s ascending political career, Barbara Bush made it clear that literacy — not fashion — was her priority. Read more from Rosemary Feitelberg’s obituary on the late First Lady in WWD.com, link in bio. #barbarabush #wwdnews
Western and ’90s trends have influenced denim for fall 2018. Think raw, dark and coated jeans mixed with bold prints and tough leather. #trendtuesdays #wwdfashion (Styled by @thealexbadia;📷: @ryanplett)