The legendary italian fashion house versace is sold to michael kors. Us fashion group pays about 1.8 billion euros, the company announced. Versace is one of the few luxury brands in italy still owned by the founding family.
Chief designer donatella versace is also expected to continue to play an important role. Like her eccentric fashion style, the 63-year-old’s thoroughly feisty appearance — her blonde hair, taut facial features and full lips — is closely linked to the brand.
The fashion house was founded in 1978 by gianni versace. Whose family most recently still controlled 80 percent of the company — of which 20 percent went to sister donatella, 30 percent to brother santo and the remaining 50 percent to donatella’s daughter allegra. "Donatella will continue to lead the creative vision of the company," announced michael kors ceo john d. Idol. The us group also announced that it would change its name to capri holdings as part of the takeover.
Although luxury designer fashion, driven by a boom in asia, is enjoying great popularity, versace has had a rather hard time in recent years. The downturn in consumption triggered by the economic crisis had taken its toll on the company. After worldwide job cuts and cost-cutting measures, the situation has recently improved again. Last year, the milan-based fashion house returned to the black, posting a profit of 15 million euros on sales of 686 million euros.
Versace faces tough competition in the luxury segment from rival louis vuitton, which belongs to french industry giant lvmh, and other upscale brands such as gucci and prada. The market is booming, thanks in particular to strong demand from china. But expensive designer fashion is also very popular in germany and the usa — for example in the rap scene, where status symbols are important. With its garish leopard patterns and the medusa head as its logo, versace is far from being to everyone’s taste, but aficionados can afford to pay thousands of dollars or euros for these pieces. Versace wearers include lady gaga, sting and princess diana.
Michael kors also defines itself as a high-end supplier, but with its handbags and accessories it plays in a much more favorably priced league. The group was founded in 1981 by the us fashion designer of the same name, michael kors, and is listed on the new york stock exchange, but is now headquartered in london. The company is expanding rapidly and spent around 1.2 billion dollars on the luxury shoe brand jimmy choo as recently as 2017. Michael kors is trying to compete with large conglomerates such as lvmh or the gucci and balenciaga parent company kering by making additional purchases. According to the u.S. Media, they also had their eye on versace.
Michael kors reported sales of 4.7 billion dollars last fiscal year. Although versace is one of the most glamorous brands in the fashion world, the takeover was not well received by investors at first — after the first reports, the share price fell sharply in u.S. Trading.
40 years ago gianni versace presented the first collection with his name on it. From then on, he powerfully stirred up the northern italian fashion industry. In the 1980s and 1990s, the brand made a worldwide breakthrough, becoming known for its opulence and bright colors. The designer was shot dead more than 20 years ago in front of his villa in florida.