Is Marc Jacobs Leaving Louis Vuitton to Take His Own Company Public?

What an IPO could mean for the Marc Jacobs empire...
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Dhani Mau
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What an IPO could mean for the Marc Jacobs empire...
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Rumors that Marc Jacobs plans to leave his post at Louis Vuitton--and that LVMH is in talks with former Balenciaga designer Nicholas Ghesquiere to take his place--have been non-stop for the past week, with reports of the ensuing split popping up everywhere from Reuters to WWD.

We wondered, though, why Jacobs would suddenly want to leave Louis Vuitton after having expressed time and time again how attached he feels to the French fashion house, even turning down the head job at Dior to stay there.

Of course, there's the possibility that the split wouldn't be Jacobs's choice--but a new report in WWD claims that Jacobs wants to focus on growing his namesake business, possibly with an IPO. And, as the trade points out, having Jacobs dedicated entirely to his brand would only further increase its value.

Going public would also mean a lot of growth and diversification from a brand that is already pretty huge and diversified for a privately owned company. Which begs the question: what will he add to the Marc Jacobs empire?

Jacobs still doesn't have a truly lower-priced line--Marc by Marc is still pretty expensive--unless you count the brand's "special items," which, while affordable, don't really include ready-to-wear. While the company has already begun revamping Marc by Marc with new hires Luella Bartley and Katie Hillier, we wouldn't be surprised if one of the company's next moves was to launch its own answer to, say, Michael Michael Kors. And hopefully a really cute one. As his brand has grown, Jacobs has yet to do anything that has felt really disappointingly mass-market. We think he could do something good and fun at the lower-priced level. And there's got to be some available real estate left on Bleecker Street, right?

Perhaps we can also expect more TV commercials--like the upcoming one being directed by Sofia Coppola. Nothing wrong with that!

Still, it sounds like it could be some time before Jacobs will devote himself solely to his own company--contrary to previous reports that he could be parting ways with LV as soon as next season, WWD says he could still be designing a few more collections for the house.