With his supplied beard and her very long black hair in the back, Alessandro Michele cultivates her Christian pace. But the Messiah will no longer make miracles. The man, who had spectacularly straightened the Gucci brand, leaves the scene. The director of creation of the main fashion brand of the French group Kering announced his departure, after twenty years of service and seven years at the head of the prestigious label.
A thunderbolt in the world of luxury, and especially for Kering. The group is the world number two in the sector behind LVMH, and Gucci represents 55 % of its sales and three quarters of its operational profit. Alessandro Michele imposed its exuberant style, its large flowers on handbags and shoes, shirts, dresses and pants in vibrant colors and eclectic and androgynous shapes.
A eccentric bias, accompanied by a very exclusive high price and distribution policy in its own stores, which has done wonder in emerging countries, especially in China, and also among young American stars. But you have to believe that everything, even cheerfulness and colors, including in new rich.
The age of black tailors
In 2021, Gucci’s sales growth was twice lower as that of Yves Saint Laurent, the other prestigious brand of the group. His ultra-classical style of tailors-pantalons while declining black is however the exact opposite of Gucci. Analysts evoke a “fatigue” of consumers, as if they had passed in adulthood, that of black tailors.
We paradoxically criticize this cantor of the diversity of forms of not having changed style. The relative underperformance of Gucci contrasted, in 2022, with the brilliant results of its two French rivals, LVMH and Hermès, whose stock market valuations have gone. Twice smaller in turnover, Hermès is now worth twice as expensive on the stock market as Kering.
The incessant confinements in China did not arrang the situation. It was necessary to react, and Alessandro, who believed to be able to walk on the water, must go to economic reason. After all, he had come to power in 2015 following the dismissal of the previous tandem of the brand, composed of Patrizio Di Marco and the designer Frida Giannini.
As in the show and sport professions, fashion is built on the success of some creative stars capable of imagining the motifs of a mythology corresponding to the spirit of the moment. The flamboyant Italian could take over the writer Alphonse Daudet, who noted, in the letters of my mill, that “the time of the windmills had passed like that of the Coches on the Rhône, parliaments and jackets with large flowers “.