PARIS — Although Pinault-Printemps-Redoute has become best known for its majority stake in Gucci Group, the retailer remains a multinational conglomerate of widely divergent interests ranging from credit services to wood and building materials....
PARIS — Although Pinault-Printemps-Redoute has become best known for its majority stake in Gucci Group, the retailer remains a multinational conglomerate of widely divergent interests ranging from credit services to wood and building materials.
In fact, French tycoon François Pinault, who holds a 42.2 percent stake in PPR and controls 55.4 percent of voting rights via his Artemis family holding company, built much of his early fortune with his family-owned Pinault Bois & Materiaux wood and construction supplies company.
As indicated in the recently published 2001 annual report, the $2.52 billion in sales from Gucci last year accounted for just 9.1 percent of PPR’s total sales of $27.52 billion.
Meanwhile, PPR’s business-to-business division — including Pinault Bois, the CFAO African export company, and the Rexel electronic components wholesaler — accounted for 45 percent of the group’s total. Together their sales tallied $12.39 billion.
PPR’s retail division top performers are the Fnac music and book chain and the Conforama furniture stores. Together, they accounted for 52.2 percent of the retail division’s $11.83 billion in sales. The Redcats mail-order business, which includes Brylane in North America, accounted for 40 percent of the division’s sales, while the Printemps department stores contributed 7.5 percent of the total. Dollar figures are converted from the euro at current exchange rates.
Last week, PPR hired Denis Olivennes, the former chief operating officer of Canal Plus, Vivendi Universal’s French pay-TV unit, to be second in command to chief executive Serge Weinberg. In this newly created post, he will be responsible for looking after the group’s brands and relationships between them.
Olivennes arrives at a key time for the group. PPR’s stock has lost almost 45 percent of its value on the Paris Bourse since January. Financial markets have questioned the group’s widely diversified strategy and heavy debt load.
There has also been speculation that PPR will slowly reduce its business-to-business activities in favor of retail and luxury, which boast higher profit margins. Last month, it sold the mail-order subsidiary of Guilbert to Staples Inc. for $808 million.
At that time, Weinberg was quoted as saying that PPR would slowly reconfigure the profile of the group. Olivennes could be a key architect in this.Meanwhile, French press reports have cited rumors that PPR is shopping around Rexel. Weinberg Thursday declined all comment on the matter.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast