LVMH Posts Record 2017 Sales Driven by Fashion and Leather Goods

It was certainly an eventful year for brands like Louis Vuitton, Dior, Givenchy and Céline.
By Dhani Mau ,
Naomi Campbell, Kim Jones and Kate Moss at the Louis Vuitton's Fall 2018 men's show. Photo: Imaxtree

The last time we checked in with LVMH, the world's largest luxury group was off to a strong first half of 2017, with revenue growth seen in all regions thanks in large part to successes in the fashion and leather goods categories, and with Louis Vuitton continuing to be the shining star.

That momentum continued throughout the rest of the year, resulting in record net profit growth for LVMH of a whopping 29 percent. By comparison, net profit rose only 11 percent in fiscal 2016. Recorded revenue reached €42.6 billion (about $53 billion) in 2017, an increase of 13 percent over the previous year.

LVMH saw the most growth this year in its fashion and leather goods category — 21 percent, to be exact. And it's not hard to see why: It's been an eventful year for labels like Louis Vuitton, LVMH's perennial cash cow, as well as Christian Dior, Givenchy and Céline.

In its earnings report, LVMH once again emphasized the success of Louis Vuitton's collaborations with Jeff Koons and Supreme this year — the latter of which is likely to go down in history as one of the most hyped, influential and simply memorable launches of all time. Neither brand will be the same after it; and, in fact, Louis Vuitton men's designer Kim Jones, who spearheaded the collab, is leaving the brand.

Speaking of departures, LVMH also saw creative turnover at Givenchy, now led by Clare Waight Keller, as well as Céline, soon to be led by Hedi Slimane. Both designers' track records of bringing commercial success to the houses they've led previously surely factored into those appointments — and if all goes well, could lead to even bigger numbers for LVMH in the future, especially if Marc Jacobs can get back on its feet.

LVMH also called out Christian Dior Couture — which it acquired last year — as a growth-driver, as well as Dior's perfume business. In the beauty category, which grew 12 percent, Sephora and Fenty Beauty also did unsurprisingly well.

"The excellent performance, to which all our businesses contributed, is due in part to the buoyant environment but above all to the remarkable creative strength of our brands and their ability to constantly reinvent themselves," said Arnault in a statement. "In an environment that remains uncertain, we can count on the appeal of our brands and the agility of our teams to strengthen, once again in 2018, our leadership in the universe of high quality products."

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