By: Rosemary Feitelberg
Women’s Wear Daily
August 13, 2014
Click on the link to read the entire article(subscription required):http://www.wwd.com/business-news/mergers-acquisitions/bogner-said-seeking-buyer-7835924
By: Rosemary Feitelberg
Women’s Wear Daily
August 13, 2014
Click on the link to read the entire article(subscription required):http://www.wwd.com/business-news/mergers-acquisitions/bogner-said-seeking-buyer-7835924
By Andrewand July 31, 2014
Yoox SpA offers potential suitors a way to combine two of the fastest growing areas of retail: luxury goods and the Internet.
The $1.6 billion company, which operates e-commerce sites for designer brands including Armani and Moncler, is poised to boost sales by about 75 percent over the next three years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Affluent consumers from Seattle to Shanghai have more to spend on luxury goods and are increasingly going online to do it, according to Retail Metrics Inc. That may grab the attention of Amazon.com Inc., said CRT Capital Group LLC.
Amazon, whose stock is under pressure after reporting a $126 million quarterly loss last week, has been flirting with high-end goods, most recently selling Burberry Group Plc fragrances. Yoox, which is profitable, could jumpstart the $149 billion company’s luxury business, according to the Luxury Institute LLC. The Italian company’s technological know-how also makes it a possible target for traditional retailers such as department stores that are looking to bolster their online presence, said retail researcher Conlumino.
Yoox is “in a pretty attractive space to be in at this point in the retail cycle,” Ken Perkins, president of Retail Metrics, a Swampscott, Massachusetts-based researcher, said in a phone interview. “It could be on people’s radar in terms of a takeover.”
The stock rose as much as 4.1 percent and traded 2.3 percent higher at 20.64 euros at 9:34 a.m. in Milan. A representative for Yoox declined to comment. Representatives for Seattle-based Amazon didn’t respond to requests for comment.
Since Yoox went public in 2009, the operator of e-commerce for more than 30 brands has nearly tripled its revenue to about $605 million last year. That growth is poised to continue, with analysts projecting sales of more than $1 billion by 2016.
Potential buyers could get the company for a bargain right now. Yoox’s shares have fallen about 40 percent this year, leaving them near their lowest valuation since last May, as one of its closest peers, Asos Plc, reduced profit forecasts.
That slump is unwarranted because Yoox has a wider product offering than Asos, more geographic reach and a more affluent consumer base, according to Chiara Rotelli, a Milan-based analyst at Mediobanca SpA. Yoox said yesterday that net sales in the second quarter climbed 15 percent to 111.5 million euros, topping analysts’ estimates.
“This might be the right time for companies to look to acquire a company like Yoox,” said Milton Pedraza, chief executive officer of the Luxury Institute, a New York-based research and consulting firm. “The mass brands understand that luxury is far more profitable and more resilient. For a company to trade up to the luxury or the premium providers in categories, that would be wise right now.”
Amazon has been building a bigger share of the apparel market and started selling Burberry fragrances. Still, it’s known more for bargains than designer dresses. Buying Yoox would give the e-commerce giant a stronger presence in luxury apparel and accessories, where margins are higher, said Neil Doshi, an analyst at CRT.
“It’s ultimately Amazon’s desire to be able to serve anybody anything that they want on their site,” Doshi said by phone. The company “has probably done a pretty good job in the lower to mid-range for apparel. To cover the full, broad spectrum, I think they’d probably want to get into more high-end stuff.”
Sales of luxury goods have been growing faster than the broader retail industry since the U.S. recession as wealthier shoppers, buoyed by rising real-estate values and equity prices, have more money to spend, said Perkins of Retail Metrics.
EBay Inc., the $66 billion online marketplace operator, may also want to expand its designer and luxury offerings, according to Kerry Rice, an analyst at Needham & Co.
Yoox’s focus on e-commerce makes it “very valuable” to existing luxury retailers as well, according to Maureen Hinton, global research director at Conlumino. A department store would be the “perfect owner,” strengthening the potential buyer’s sales channels while preserving Yoox’s independence, she added. Yoox also runs three multi-brand Web stores.
Exane BNP Paribas projects that e-commerce will account for about 40 percent of global luxury expansion in the next five years.
Yoox “is well positioned for this growth, with exposure across different segments of online luxury and unparalleled expertise,” Exane BNP Paribas analyst Luca Solca wrote in a report.
Kering SAcould be interested in buying Yoox, should the owner of Saint Laurent dresses and Bottega Veneta handbags decide to take its relationship with the company one step further, said Rotelli of Mediobanca. Yoox runs the online operations for most of Kering’s brands.
Cie. Financiere Richemont SA, which last year sought to quash speculation that it was in talks to sell its online fashion retailer Net-a-Porter to Yoox, may instead decide to buy Yoox, said Pedraza of the Luxury Institute. Such a move would enable the Swiss company to take the cost-cutting and revenue benefits of a deal for itself.
Kering may prefer to continue its joint venture rather than acquire Yoox, and Richemont may be content with its Net-a-Porter operations and not want to get bigger in online fashion.
Representatives for San Jose, California-based EBay and Paris-based Kering declined to comment, as did a representative for Richemont.
Still, Yoox sits at the confluence of luxury and e-commerce, and that makes it desirable for both Internet giants and retailers, said Pedraza of the Luxury Institute.
“To me, Yoox is about premium and luxury,” he said. It’s “an extremely attractive candidate for a strategic acquirer.”
Click the link to read the entire article which includes quotes from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute:http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-07-30/yoox-with-online-luxury-is-alluring-for-amazon-real-m-a.html
July 30, 2014
Firm ranked No. 1 for making clients feel special across the full customer experience, according to Luxury Institute survey
ATLANTA, July 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ – Atlantic Trust, the U.S. private wealth management division of CIBC (NYSE: CM) (TSX: CM), is pleased to announce it has been recognized as one of the top U.S. wealth management firms in the 2014 Luxury Brand Status Index™ (LBSI) Wealth Management survey.
“We are very pleased that our dedication to serving as a trusted advisor to our clients and their families is being recognized by this independent research,” said Jack Markwalter, chairman and CEO of Atlantic Trust. “Atlantic Trust is committed to providing investment excellence along with the highest quality client experience.”
Atlantic Trust received the second-highest luxury brand ranking among 39 wealth management firms in the U.S., according to a survey of investors with an average net worth of $15 million and an annual average income of $800,000 by the Luxury Institute, a New York-based research firm. Investors were asked to evaluate the firms on four LBSI components: quality, exclusivity, social status of clients and the ability to make clients feel special across the full customer experience. Each firm was assigned a score based on the responses.
Atlantic Trust ranked No. 1 for making its clients feel special across the full customer experience and rated near the top for delivering superior quality products and services consistently, being truly unique and exclusive, and having clients who are admired and respected.
Atlantic Trust also ranked as the firm that the ultra-wealthy are most willing to recommend to friends, family and people they care about.
The Luxury Institute’s ranking of Atlantic Trust as a leading U.S. wealth management firm is further validated by the firm’s strong client retention, steady inflow of assets from existing and new client relationships, and the addition of senior talent across the country.
Click the link to read the entire article: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/atlantic-trust-recognized-as-a-top-us-wealth-management-firm-269228641.html
By Danielle Verbrigghe
July 23, 2014
Boutique wealth shops carry a much higher brand cachet than bigger firms among multimillionaires, according to a recent survey by the Luxury Institute. While Rockefeller Wealth Management rose to the top of the list, several of the biggest firms, including Merrill Lynch and UBS Private Wealth Management, continued an ongoing descent toward the bottom.
In the study, the Luxury Institute asked multimillionaires with an average net worth of $15 million and average annual income of $800,000 to evaluate wealth firms on factors including product quality, exclusivity, social status and ability to deliver special client experiences, and assigned firms a score based on the responses.
Rockefeller Wealth Management, a New York-based multi-family office, topped the list of highly ranked wealth managers. Coming second was Atlanta-based Atlantic Trust Private Wealth Management. Convergent Wealth Advisors was a close third, followed by First Republic Private Wealth Management and Bessemer Trust.
“Consumers are opting for boutique firms,” says Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza. “Wealthy consumers really value relationships and the smaller boutique firms really deliver.”
Some of the biggest firms meandered at the bottom or sunk lower. Merrill Lynch tumbled to last place out of 39 firms, while UBS Private Wealth Management came in second to last. Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and Charles Schwab rounded out the bottom five.
The brand reputation problem facing some of the largest firms is partially driven by legal and regulatory woes and other negative press coverage some of the brands attracted since 2008, Pedraza says. “Any time you have news that’s a negative in the media, these firms are going to get hit,” he says. “The larger firms took a beating.”
Other big brands, including, Citi Private Bank, Barclays Wealth, HSBC Private Bank and Wells Fargo also ranked in the bottom half of brands.
The rankings reflect general wealthy individual perceptions of overall brands, rather than specific client experiences, Pedraza ways. While the specific rankings tend to vary from year to year, quartile placement remains relatively stable, he says. This year’s results continue an ongoing trend of boutique wealth shops rising in the rankings and wirehouses and bigger firms sliding lower, he says.
While dropping slightly from its number three spot in 2013, Bessemer Trust made the top five list several years in a row. Brown Brothers Harriman, which took the top spot last year and in 2012, tumbled off the top five list. Northern Trust, Vanguard Personal Investors and J.P. Morgan Private Wealth Management also fell out of the top five.
Brown Brothers Harriman’s absence on the list doesn’t indicate an image problem, Pedraza says. “I don’t think it’s so much that they’re faltering as consumers perceive other brands to be better,” he says.
Boutique shops have an advantage over larger firms when it comes to creating a connection with wealthy investors, says Linda Beerman, chief fiduciary officer and head of wealth strategies for Atlantic Trust.
“Our clients feel they have an exclusive relationship with their client service representatives,” says Beerman. “It’s really a high-touch, client-service driven model.”
Offering unique experiences and hosting events is one way Convergent Wealth Advisors positions itself as a luxury brand, says Douglas Wolford, president and chief operating officer for Convergent Wealth Advisors.
“Wealthy people can find any number of people who are good investors, but what most wealthy people want is an experience,” Wolford says. “Boutiques provide that experience better than big companies.”
To differentiate themselves from other firms offering advice to ultra-high-net-worth and high-net-worth investors and families, Convergent offers special events for wealthy clients. For example, the firm is hosting an event in which wealthy clients can have lunch with David Rubenstein, co-founder and co-CEO of the Carlyle Group. Convergent has also held events for clients where wealthy investors get to drive new models of luxury vehicles, such as Ferraris or Bentleys, before they become available to the general public.
“We focus on trying to provide clients with experiences that money can’t buy,” says Wolford
Such experiences go a long way in attracting wealthy clients and enhancing the firm’s reputation as a luxury brand, Wolford says. “Convergent is a luxury brand and we take care to protect that as part of our image,” he says.
And that image has contributed to client development, according to Wolford.
Convergent Wealth Advisors has seen its Independence by Convergent unit, which caters to investors with between $1 million and $10 million in assets, grow in recent years, driven in part by brand perception, Wolford says. That division has added about 300 new high-net-worth clients over the past two years.
“The brand has really driven that growth. People want to be associated with a luxury, boutique brand,” says Wolford. “I think Convergent is an aspirational brand for people in Indepencence.”
Overall, wealthy individuals are apt to place a greater degree of trust in smaller, boutique firms, says Pedraza.
For brands at the bottom, “There’s only up they can go,” Pedraza says.
Click the link to read the entire article which includes quotes from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute: http://fundfire.com/c/934734/9128/merrill_sink_luxury_ranking_rockefeller_reaches?referrer_module=emailForwarded&module_order=0
(NEW YORK) July 22, 2014 – In the latest edition of its Luxury Brand Status Index Wealth Management (LBSI) survey, the independent and objective New York-based Luxury Institute asked investors with an average net worth of $15 million and annual average income of $800,000 to share detailed opinions of 39 leading firms in the wealth management business. LBSI scores (1-10) comprise respondents’ evaluations of each firm’s product quality, exclusivity, social status and ability to deliver special client experiences.
Set up in 1882 as the Rockefeller family office, New York-based Rockefeller & Co. earns the highest overall LBSI score of 7.94. Ranking closely behind Rockefeller & Co. are Atlanta-based Atlantic Trust Private Wealth Management (7.93), and Convergent Wealth Advisors (7.92). First Republic Private Wealth Management (7.82), Bessemer Trust (7.68) round out the top five.
“Wealthy clients tell us that expertise, trustworthiness and generosity are the critical elements in building strong client relationships in wealth management,” Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza. “Successful wealth managers are relationship builders first, and, since few can beat the markets in the long run, money managers second.”
Additional firms evaluated include Ameriprise Financial, Bank of America, Barclays Wealth Management, BB&T Wealth Management, Bernstein Global Wealth Management, BMO Harris Private Banking, BNY Mellon Wealth Management, Boston Private Bank and Trust, Brown Brothers Harriman, Charles Schwab, Citi Private Bank, Credit Suisse Private Banking, Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management, Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown, Fidelity Investments, Fifth Third Private Bank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC Private Bank, J.P. Morgan Private Bank, J.P. Morgan Private Wealth Management, Merrill Lynch, Merrill Lynch Private Banking & Investment Group, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney Wealth Management, National City Private Client Group, Neuberger Berman, Northern Trust, PNC Wealth Management, SunTrust Private Wealth Management, U.S. Bank Private Client Group, U.S. Trust, UBS Private Wealth Management, Vanguard Personal Investors, Wells Fargo Private Bank and Wilmington Trust Wealth Advisory Services.
The Luxury Institute, LLC
By: Laura Milligan
July 15, 2014
The Real Real- which is on track to do $100 million in sales this year, The Fashion Law reports – has evaluated the 500,000 designer items from 500 brands on its database to find what holds its value, and what depreciates faster than a supercar. And some of the results may surprise you.
Most of the brands that hold their value probably won’t come as a shock – Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermès, Christian Louboutin, Cartier, Alaïa and Van Cleef & Arpels among them – but those that lose value are more unexpected. Tod’s, Versace and Etro are among those that lose their value fastest, while Marni, Alexander Wang, 3.1 Phillip Lim and Marc Jacobs are among the labels that retail for the furthest from their original retail price. Although they are relatively young labels, Victoria Beckham, Charlotte Olympia and Alexander McQueen all resale for very close to the original value. Whether they will have Chanel or Hermès’s longevity when their pieces become vintage, however, remains to be seen.
Aside from buzz about a new designer (Phoebe Philo having rejuvenated the resale value of Céline, for example), the most important factor in a piece holding its value is availability.
“Brands have to be careful where they allow their product to be sold,” Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute, a industry research group, told Fortune- adding that brands that hold their value generally do not discount or sell widely online. “In that sense, it creates a perception of purity, [which the brand will then] back up with design quality and heritage. If I buy something, I will think, ‘Wow it has long term investment value.’”
One little footnote though before you go forth and shop: no piece is actually an “investment” unless you plan to ever sell it. Just saying.
Click the link to read the entire article which includes a quote from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute: http://www.vogue.co.uk/news/2014/07/15/investment-buys-hermes-chanel-cartier-christian-louboutin
By: Paul Hiebert
The New Yorker
July 7, 2014
Bellezza mentioned Tiffany & Co. as a good example of a company executing the policy outlined in her and Keinan’s report. Some store locations offer side entrances and private viewing rooms to physically separate the élite shoppers from those looking to purchase a seventy-five-dollar Heart Tag Charm. The core Tiffany users, Bellezza says, are therefore defined by their access to privileged retail space, while the company can still grant a degree of access to the masses without tarnishing the brand. In 2013, the Luxury Institute, a research and consulting firm, conducted a survey that revealed that Tiffany was the jewelry brand most widely purchased by American women with a minimum net worth of five million dollars.
As Amy Merrick noted in April, Burberry recovered from its overexposure problem. Following the arrival of Angela Ahrendts as its C.E.O., in 2006, (who has since left for Apple), Burberry began scaling back its licensing agreements and removing its signature check from about ninety per cent of its items. A sense of sustainability has returned, thanks to a clear balance of insiders enjoying their cachet and outsiders looking in.
Click the link to read the entire article: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/currency/2014/07/the-value-of-luxury-poseurs.html
By: Erin Griffith
July 7, 2014
They’re all considered investments, but which luxury brands hold their value the best may surprise you.
There’s a reason they call them “investment pieces.” At $22,000 for a Proenza Schouler tote or $9,000 for a Ralph Lauren dress, luxury goods are meant to last a lifetime and hold their value. That’s why the market for used designer goods is the most attractive category for online consignment.
One such marketplace, a website called The RealReal, is on track to do $100 million in sales this year. (The company takes a cut of each sale.) The RealReal recently tapped its database of 500,000 luxury goods from 500 designer brands to find which brands have the highest resale value, and which ones hold their value the longest. The startup found that Chanel, Christian Louboutin, and Hermès hold their value the longest. Tod’s and Versace lose their value the fastest.
Perhaps more surprising is which brands carry the highest and lowest resale value. Items from Givenchy, Victoria Beckham, Charlotte Olympia and Alexander McQueen all sell for much closer to their original price than goods from Marni, Alexander Wang, 3.1 Philip Lim, and Marc Jacobs.
Resale values of fashion or luxury goods can fluctuate depending on buzz around a certain designer, particularly if a fashion houses hires a a new creative director or chief executive, according to Rati Levesque, Chief Merchant at The RealReal. “When Phoebe Philo joined Céline as the creative director, it added more resale value to the brand,” she says.
But more important than buzz is availability and discounting. If a luxury brand frequently discounts its goods at outlet stores or online via flash sales, consumers will perceive that they don’t have to pay full price for that brand, says Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute, a luxury industry research group. While baby boomer shoppers tend to research something online and then buy it in the store, millennials do it the other way around. They “showroom,” the term for checking out an item in the store before finding the best deal for it online.
“These days you can find ways to arbitrage the brands, because you have so much information and the market is inefficient,” Pedraza says. “Brands have to be careful where they allow their product to be sold.”
For example: Chanel and Hermès do not hold sales in their stores and they have a limited number of outlet stores. Chanel doesn’t even sell its goods online, with the exception of beauty products. “In that sense, it creates a perception of purity,” Pedraza says.” The brands then “back it up with design quality and heritage,” he says. “If I buy something, I will think, ‘Wow it has long term investment value.’”
Below are some luxury brands that fall on both sides of the spectrum.
Click the link to read the entire article which includes quotes from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute:http://fortune.com/2014/07/07/which-luxury-brands-have-highest-resale-value/
By: Laura Chesters
July 4, 2014
Striding down Fifth Avenue clutching a monogrammed black Gucci leather satchel, François -Henri Pinault stands out among many of the trackpant-clad visitors to America’s most expensive shopping street.
Americans might still be better known for their casual fashions but Mr Pinault, the chief executive of Gucci’s owner, Kering, is betting that the millions of domestic and international tourists who descend on New York each year want to snap up European labels on their shopping sprees.
The Frenchman, who is married to the Mexican-American actress Salma Hayek and whose family owns more than 40 per cent of the Paris-based luxury goods giant, says: “Over the last few years we have talked about the growth engine of luxury being in Asia – but it is important to remember the size and potential of America.”
According to market research from Bain/Altagamma on the luxury goods industry, the Americas actually passed China as the growth leader last year. The researchers estimate that the continent’s luxury goods market will grow 4 per cent, and the US alone is valued at €66bn (£52bn) this year. Other European brands, including the UK’s Burberry and Mulberry, have also been steadily building up their presence across North America.
Mr Pinault is in the US to visit Kering’s American luxury division, which launched three years ago, and its flagship Gucci store in New York, the biggest in the world.
Kering, which owns 17 luxury brands including Saint Laurent and Christopher Kane, now plans to invest huge sums renovating some of its 180 US stores and expanding into new areas, as well as into Mexico and South America. Sales at it luxury division rose 8 per cent last year.
Mr Pinault is also betting that wealthy Americans are beginning to change their habits. “The way of life here has been to not dress up, but the US shopper is becoming more sophisticated.”
Sarah Willlersdorf at Boston Consulting Group agrees that the wealthy millionaires and billionaires in the States have traditionally spent their cash on cars and experiences rather than expensive clothes, but that now what BCG calls the “personal goods” sector is about to enter a boom period.
She says: “The aspirational masses here do want to spend on luxury – they want to spend on brands, and it is growing. There is a huge change in the desire to buy brands.”
BCG expects that by 2020 the US will have more than a third of the luxury market and will still be bigger than China’s high-end sector. Japan will account for 7 per cent and the rest of Asia about 23 per cent of the global luxury market. Milton Pedraza, chief executive of the Luxury Institute, a consultancy, agrees: “There are big opportunities for European luxury brands in the US.”
America already makes up 18 per cent of Kering’s group sales, and Mr Pinault is keen to make sure its brands have the best stores in the best locations across the US – not just in New York, which has always had Sex and the City-style fans of European labels.
Ms Willlersdorf adds: “It is not just about East and West coast. The middle and south are very wealthy. European brands are under-represen-ted, particularly in second-tier cities.”
Click the link to view the entire article which includes a quote from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/america-becomes-absolutely-fabulous-9585525.html
By: Simon Brooke
June 26, 2014
Those waiting for the long-predicted explosion of luxury retailing onlines are still holding their breath. While some reports have estimated that global online retail sales have increased by as much as 17 per cent a year since 2007, growth in the effete world of luxury goods is nothing like as fast. Having viewed e-commerce with suspicion for many years, several successful brands have dipped a well-manicured toe in the digital waters-many prompted by the success of Net-a-Porter-but most have held back. Miuccia Prada summed up the sector’s attitude to web sales and e-commerce last year when she declared: “We think that, for luxury, it’s not right…Personally, I’m not interested.”
The new area for growth in luxury retailing is still not internet-based-it’s in the streets and shopping centres. Yes, bricks and mortar are back. In the luxury shopping capitals of the world-London, Paris, New York, and increasingly cities such as Shanghai and Dubai-well-established brands alongside up-and-coming names are opening new locations as well as expanding and refurbishing existing stores. Many are making significant investments: Versace, for instance, has recently sold a 20 per cent stake to private equity house Blackstone so that the brand can develop new venues.
“Luxury brands recognize the reality that only at most 10 to 15 per cent of sales are conducted online and the store, adapted for the future, will always be the main channel of customer engagement,” says Milton Pedraza, CEO of New York-based boutique research and consulting firm The Luxury Institute. “There are many cities across the world that present opportunities in growth for luxury brands and they are selectively opening stores there.”
The Italian trade body Fondazione Altagamma estimates that although online luxury shopping rose by 28 per cent last year, compared with 2012, it still only comprised 4.5 per cent of overall global luxury sales, further evidence that the luxury industry prefers “on street” to “online”. In an industry worth $300 billion, an estimated 90 per cent of luxury purchases still take place in stores.
Click the link to read the entire article which includes quotes from Milton Pedraza, CEO of Luxury Institute: http://edition.pagesuite-professional.co.uk/Launch.aspx?EID=915643ec-109b-4ba4-a154-fc2360651b30