HONG KONG — Jackie Chan took to the stage in Hong Kong last Thursday, fought off a group of assailants wearing Jackie Chan masks, attacked a stall with a chain saw and ripped the clothing off an individual who appeared on stage claiming to be a tourist.
The man, who ended up in his boxer shorts, was Compagnie Financiere Richemont chief intellectual property council and executive director Frederick Mostert, who, in his capacity as honorary chairman of the International Trademark Association, was, with Chan, launching an international campaign titled "Fakes Cost More."
The forceful point behind the media event was that counterfeiting is not a victimless crime.
"Consumers should consider the social issues," said Mostert, once he had donned a pair of trousers, to a media gathering at Hong Kong's Convention & Exhibition Center. "They could well be supporting child labor, organized crime, international terrorism and tax evasion."
In support of this theme, Mostert quoted a range of statistics that deliberately went beyond the luxury-goods violations with which counterfeiting is normally associated.
"The World Health Organization estimates that as much as 15 percent of all pharmaceuticals are fake," he said. "And a year ago — this is the one that really scares me — a fake medical product was planted in a man in the United States and the fake mesh probably wasn't even sterile."
Frustration with slow law enforcement worldwide would seem to be part of the impetus behind the new campaign, which emphasizes personal suffering and is clearly targeting the emotions, as much as the consciences, of consumers.
"No, I don't want to say it's a switch of emphasis," said Mostert backstage after the event, consulting his authentic Panerai watch, having had the fake Cartier one he wore in his bumbling-tourist role smashed by Chan. "The work of governments, police, customs departments has to continue. But consumers are ignorant about these links with child labor and international terrorism and if you tell them, they're shocked."
Mostert, in his press presentation, referred to Magnus Ranstorp, director of the Center for the Study of Terrorism & Political Violence at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and to Ronald Noble, Interpol's secretary-general.Two days before the conference, Hong Kong's media reported that the Customs & Excise department had arrested a man who sold a fake Hermes bag for 8,000 Hong Kong dollars, or about $1,025, to an undercover customs officer and a Hermes representative who were posing as tourists. The shop, in the middle of Hong Kong's upmarket Central district, had been put under surveillance for two weeks at the request of Hermes Greater China's managing director Bertrand Michaud. Nineteen other fake Hermes bags, of unusually high quality, were also seized.
"I decided to make an example of this man to give a very strong message in Hong Kong," said Michaud, who is also president of the French Chamber of Commerce in the city. The man has not yet been charged. "The Customs & Excise department do their best in Hong Kong, they set an example in Asia and the authorities understood why I wanted to do it. In China...it's a bit difficult. We have to communicate and spend a lot more money to fight this because it's a criminal activity which is becoming very dangerous."
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)