As the fashion world waits with bated breath to find out what will happen next in Louis Vuitton's post-Marc Jacobs-era (seriously, when are they going to officially confirm this Nicolas Ghesquière appointment?), parent company LVMH is facing issues of its own—namely an overall slowdown in sales.
According to the Telegraph, the luxury conglomerate (also home to Céline, Dior, Fendi, Givenchy, and Loewe) experienced just a two percent growth in the third quarter. And even more worrisome, the weakened sales are happening in what is usually considered the "recession-proof" trio of businesses: "fashion and leather goods, perfume and cosmetics, and watches and jewelry."
Which means that Louis Vuitton's recent move towards "hyper-luxury" (i.e. more exclusive and really expensive) handbags and leather goods comes at an opportune time. Louis Vuitton actually makes up over half of LVMH's overall profits and the house hasn't been immune to a slowdown, either. Even under Marc Jacobs's 16-year tenure as creative director, Vuitton saw annual sales growth decline from 10 percent to five to six percent this year.
Perhaps this means Louis Vuitton really could benefit from some new blood at the creative helm, which might then trickle over and jump-start sales at the LVMH mothership.