News / Arts & Entertainment

Designer Marc Jacobs Leaves Louis Vuitton

U.S. designer Marc Jacobs appears at the end of his Spring/Summer 2014 women's ready-to-wear fashion show for French fashion house Louis Vuitton during Paris fashion week, Oct. 2, 2013.
U.S. designer Marc Jacobs appears at the end of his Spring/Summer 2014 women's ready-to-wear fashion show for French fashion house Louis Vuitton during Paris fashion week, Oct. 2, 2013.
Reuters
Marc Jacobs, the star designer who turned Louis Vuitton from a staid luggage-maker into a global fashion brand, is leaving to focus on his own eponymous label, a source close to the French company's parent LVMH said on Wednesday.
 
The move follows a series of leadership changes at Louis Vuitton, LVMH's cash cow and biggest profit- and revenue- contributor, aimed at helping the brand regain some of its lost prestige after a sustained decline in sales over the past year.
 
“Marc Jacobs is leaving Vuitton and will focus on his own brand,” the source said on condition of anonymity.
 
LVMH and Marc Jacobs declined to comment.
 
Jacobs' departure comes a month after LVMH founder and chief executive Bernard Arnault appointed his daughter Delphine as deputy head of Louis Vuitton and replaced last year longstanding chief Yves Carcelle with group veteran Michael Burke.
 
Louis Vuitton, which built its name and profitability on its LV-embossed canvas bags, has been suffering from cooling demand in Asia and consumers' growing preference for no-logo products.
 
Over the past year, the brand has put brakes on its expansion, contributing to its sales growth halving to around 5 percent and last month, it hired accessories designer Darren Spaziani, ex-Proenza Schouler, to beef up its high-end offering of leather bags.
 
Nicolas Ghesquiere, a darling of fashion editors, who left Balenciaga last year after having successfully revamped the Kering fashion brand, is seen as a frontrunner to replace Jacobs.
 
“It would be a positive sign if Ghesquiere joined Louis Vuitton as he is one of the most coveted designers today and he would give a creative jolt to the brand,” said David Da Maia, analyst at brokerage Aurel BGC in Paris.
 
Arnault has been regularly changing the creative and management teams of his fashion brands to refresh the style and drive expansion.
 
LVMH's Celine has been going from strength to strength since award-winning designer Phoebe Philo took its creative helm in 2008 while Riccardo Tisci has brought new vitality to Givenchy since his appointment in 2005.
 
Jacobs, whose theatrical fashion shows contributed to heightening the brand's profile, introduced collaborations with artists such as Richard Prince, Takashi Murakami and Stephen Sprouse and recently rapper Kanye West to help make the brand more relevant to fashion followers.
 
Swan song
 
Marc Jacobs on Wednesday presented his last collection for Louis Vuitton, an all-black swan song that incorporated elements from his past shows such as the train station he famously reconstituted and the slow-turning white carousel carrying models, including Kate Moss, two years ago.
 
Today, the Marc Jacobs brand and particularly its more accessible line Marc by Marc Jacobs, are among the most profitable fashion subsidiaries within LVMH, enjoying strong demand in the United States and Japan.
 
Marc Jacobs also launched a cosmetics products line in August in the United States, with exclusive distribution handled by Sephora, LVMH's beauty products retail chain.
 
Media reports said the designer aimed to float his business - which is estimated to generate sales of around 500 million euros - on the New York Stock Exchange within a few years.
 
Some industry observers suggest Marc Jacobs has been emboldened by the success of Michael Kors, the U.S. brand whose shares and sales have been enjoying stellar growth since the initial public offering late last year.
 
At the age of 24, Jacobs was the youngest designer to receive the New Fashion Talent award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. After graduating from the Parsons New School of Design, Jacobs worked for Perry Ellis after the designer passed away and shortly thereafter created his own label in 1984 with partner Robert Duffy.
 
He became Louis Vuitton's artistic director in 1997.
 
When Dior sacked John Galliano two years ago after a video showed him making antisemitic comments in a Paris bar, Jacobs was one of the leading contenders to replace him but according to reports, talks fell through over terms. In the end, Dior took more than a year to appoint Raf Simons as its new designer.

You May Like

UN: 1 Million Somalis at Risk of Hunger

Group warns region is in dire need of humanitarian aid, with at least 200,000 children under age of five acutely malnourished as drought hits southern, central part of nation More

Human Rights Groups Allege Supression of Freedoms in Thailand

Thailand’s military, police have suppressed release of independent report assessing human rights in kingdom during first 100 days of latest coup More

Jennifer Lawrence Contacts FBI After Nude Photos Hacked

'Silver Linings Playbook' actress' photos were posted on image-sharing forum 4chan; Federal Bureau of Investigations is looking into matter More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forcesi
X
September 02, 2014 12:58 PM
A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Internet, Technology Offer New Tools for Journalists

The Internet and rapidly evolving technology is quickly changing how people receive news and how journalists deliver it. There are now more ways to tell a story than ever before. One school in Los Angeles is teaching the next generation of journalists with the help of a state-of-the-art newsroom. Elizabeth Lee has this report.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.
Video

Video Cost to Raise Child in US Continues to Rise

The cost of raising a child in the United States continues to rise. In its latest annual report, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says middle income families with a child born in 2013 can expect to spend more than $240,000 before that child turns 18. And sending that child to college more than doubles that amount. VOA’s Deborah Block visited with a couple with one child in Alexandria, Virginia, to learn if the report reflects their lifestyle.
Video

Video Chaotic Afghan Vote Recount Threatens Nation’s Future

Afghanistan’s troubled presidential election continues to be rocked by turmoil as an audit of the ballots drags on. The U.N. says the recount will not be completed before September 10. Observers say repeated disputes and delays are threatening the orderly transfer of power and could have dangerous consequences. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

Beyond Category

Pianist Myra Melford’s new CD “Life Carries Me This Way” features solo piano interpretations of drawings by modern artist Don Reich. She performs songs from the album, talks about turning art into music, and joins host Eric Felten in some Chicago boogie-woogie on "Beyond Category."