Bernard Arnault has finally taken control of Tiffany & Co.
Bernard Arnault has finally taken control of Tiffany & Co.

When the billionaire bling kids get to run Tiffany and Prada

The appointment of Bernard Arnault’s 28-year-old son to a senior role at Tiffany is the latest example of a luxury dynasty tapping the next generation.
Bloomberg
PUBLISHED ON JAN 12, 2021 07:51 PM IST

Bernard Arnault has finally taken control of Tiffany & Co.

With the acquisition being LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE’s biggest deal to date, and an expensive trophy asset despite the last-minute price cut, there’s little wonder that the company’s chief executive officer is sending experienced staffers from his flagship brand Louis Vuitton to oversee it.

More interesting is the appointment of his 28-year-old son Alexandre to a senior role at Tiffany. It is the latest example of how Arnault, the 71-year-old LVMH founder  and France’s richest man, is situating his children into the world’s biggest luxury group, readying them for eventual succession.

It’s a smart move, and one that is playing out across the industry, as scions from family-controlled houses like Prada SpA and cashmere-maker Brunello Cucinelli SpA are elevated to top roles. Younger, digitally focused consumers will drive high-end sales over the next decade. Who better to understand them than the next generation of luxury dynasties? They’re bling kids themselves. 

Alexandre Arnault will become executive vice president of product and communications at Tiffany. He was previously CEO of Rimowa, the luggage company that LVMH acquired in 2016, which had been growing until travel seized up with the pandemic. His digital and fashion credentials include spearheading Rimowa’s successful collaborations with streetwear houses Supreme and Virgil Abloh’s Off-White.

Such experience will be crucial at Tiffany. Creating a buzz about the storied brand will be imperative for appealing to Millennial and Gen Z consumers, particularly in Asia. These customers also care deeply about brand values, so differentiating Tiffany on sustainability will be important too.

But the younger Arnault will also be tasked with elevating Tiffany’s luxury status. Consequently, he’ll be flanked by two top Louis Vuitton managers: rising star Anthony Ledru, who will become Tiffany’s chief executive, and Michael Burke, one of Bernard Arnault’s most trusted lieutenants, who will become its chairman.

Pairing his children with experienced executives is a pattern that Arnault has used before. For the past seven years, his daughter Delphine Arnault, who is in charge of all Louis Vuitton’s product-related activities, has worked alongside Burke, who is CEO of Louis Vuitton.

Meanwhile, in watches, his son Frederic Arnault was recently appointed as CEO of Tag Heuer. He’d worked alongside Swiss watch industry veteran Jean-Claude Biver earlier in his career, overseeing Tag Heuer’s smart watches.

It’s a similar story outside of LVMH.

At rival Kering SA, founder Francois Pinault already handed over the reins to his son Francois-Henri, who has been chairman and CEO since 2005. One of the key tenets of Pinault junior, now 58, has been sustainability, which Kering says it has put at the heart of its strategy.

At Prada SpA, Lorenzo Bertelli, the 32-year-old son of Miuccia Prada and co-Chief Executive Officer Patrizio Bertelli, leads marketing and communications as well as the group’s corporate social responsibility function. As a former racing driver with little business experience, his appointment two years ago raised eyebrows. But he has done well so far by pushing e-commerce and a sustainability agenda. Digital investment and a focus on environment-friendly fabrics (his first major initiative was unveiling nylon products made out of recycled ocean plastic, fishing nets and textile industry waste) have likely benefited Prada’s turnaround efforts. 

For both Prada and LVMH, a changing of the guard still looks a ways off. If family succession is the outcome — and whoever gets the job must be well qualified — Bertelli looks the frontrunner at Prada, while the field is wide open at LVMH. Alongside Delphine, Alexandre and Frederic, their brother Antoine Arnault is also involved in the business, with roles including responsibility for LVMH’s communications and environmental strategy. The youngest son Jean is finishing his studies. 

When the time comes, Bernard Arnault could hand everything over to one of his children, or he could split his responsibilities between them, with some siblings leading the most important divisions. The latter path would help prevent a family feud, while putting Europe’s second most valuable company in a stronger position to anticipate emerging trends. 

How Tiffany’s future shapes up will help determine not only whether Arnault was right to press ahead with the deal, but which of these succession scenarios eventually prevails.

Follow more stories on Facebook and Twitter

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Designers have been rethinking their collections. Above, a printed jumpsuit with relaxed silhouette by Nachiket Barve. An Anita Dongre lehenga with pockets, made up of pieces that can be reused separately. A powder blue chanderi kurta with trousers meant for comfort, by Ritu Kumar. A dressy sweatsuit with statement sleeves by Twenty Dresses. A woollen sari by Anavila Misra.
Designers have been rethinking their collections. Above, a printed jumpsuit with relaxed silhouette by Nachiket Barve. An Anita Dongre lehenga with pockets, made up of pieces that can be reused separately. A powder blue chanderi kurta with trousers meant for comfort, by Ritu Kumar. A dressy sweatsuit with statement sleeves by Twenty Dresses. A woollen sari by Anavila Misra.

What the next few seasons will look like for the fashion industry

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:02 PM IST
Overnight, the buying stopped. Covid-19 altered silhouettes and buying patterns too. What is the way forward? A return to the classics, conscious creation and relaxed silhouettes, designers say.
Close
“We’ve had a whole year to think about the effects of fast fashion and how we spend. We have had the time ask ourselves, do I need so many things? The answer, most probably, is no,” Ritu Kumar says.
“We’ve had a whole year to think about the effects of fast fashion and how we spend. We have had the time ask ourselves, do I need so many things? The answer, most probably, is no,” Ritu Kumar says.

Clothes are becoming a little more needs-based, says designer Ritu Kumar

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:25 PM IST
To thrive again, in the pandemic, the fashion industry must return to its roots — the unique and sustainable handloom and handicrafts, the veteran designer says
Close
Her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, sported a mullet in his heyday. But it’s Miley’s version that has triggered the hairstyle trend among A-listers this time around. (IMAGE COURTESY INSTAGRAM/ @MILEYCYRUS)
Her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, sported a mullet in his heyday. But it’s Miley’s version that has triggered the hairstyle trend among A-listers this time around. (IMAGE COURTESY INSTAGRAM/ @MILEYCYRUS)

Run and hide! The mullet is rearing its ugly head again

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 08:34 PM IST
Everyone’s hair nightmare has made another comeback. Here’s why it keeps returning, and why celebrities love it so much.
Close
Priyanka Chopra shares her quick and easy makeup routine(Instagram/priyankachopra)
Priyanka Chopra shares her quick and easy makeup routine(Instagram/priyankachopra)

People who do real makeup will be so mad: Priyanka Chopra shares quick glam look

By Nishtha Grover, Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 02:28 PM IST
  • Priyanka Chopra recently shared her quick and easy to do makeup look that she sticks to for all the video calls. The actor is currently extremely busy promoting her upcoming film and her autobiography, online.
Close
American poet Amanda Gorman reads a poem during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol in Washington January 20, 2021.(Reuters)
American poet Amanda Gorman reads a poem during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol in Washington January 20, 2021.(Reuters)

All about Amanda Gorman's powerful fashion, poem at Joe Biden's inauguration

PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 01:53 PM IST
At the ceremony, 22-year-old poet, Amanda Gorman took to the stage to perform her composition for the event, The Hill We Climb, and the social activist gave powerful messages, not only through her words, but also her choice of clothes.
Close
Nora Fatehi shares a black and white image(Instagram/norafatehi )
Nora Fatehi shares a black and white image(Instagram/norafatehi )

Nora Fatehi channels Madhubala's old Bollywood charm in pearl bustier, dupatta

By Nishtha Grover, Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:20 PM IST
  • Nora Fatehi recently shared a beautiful black and white image of herself looking like a dream in a pearl bustier designed for her by the duo Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla.
Close
The outbreak of syphilis caused the men’s periwig to catch on in the 17th century. Royals like King Louis XIV of France wore it to hide hair loss. (New York Public Library)
The outbreak of syphilis caused the men’s periwig to catch on in the 17th century. Royals like King Louis XIV of France wore it to hide hair loss. (New York Public Library)

Emergency styling: How disasters, disease have altered hemlines in the past

By Cherylann Mollan
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 09:50 PM IST
Periwigs, all-weather gloves and the return of the face veil in the US can all be traced to outbreaks and pandemics, from as far back as the 17th century to as recently as the 20th.
Close
Malaika Arora looks stunning in her maxi dress(Instagram story/malaikaaroraofficial)
Malaika Arora looks stunning in her maxi dress(Instagram story/malaikaaroraofficial)

Malaika Arora adds a touch of chic to 5k comfy dress during impromptu shoot

By Nishtha Grover, Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 10:50 AM IST
  • Malaika Arora has been telling us the correct way to rock a comfy outfit with panache for the longest time now and her latest pictures that are from an impromptu shoot in her balcony featuring a maxi dress are giving us all the inspiration that we need.
Close
Sara Ali Khan in the Maldives(Instagram/saraalikhan95)
Sara Ali Khan in the Maldives(Instagram/saraalikhan95)

Sara Ali Khan is a vision to behold in 13k spaghetti strap dress in Maldives

By Nishtha Grover, Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 08:24 AM IST
  • Sara Ali Khan is currently soaking in the sun and enjoying delicious meals with her family in the Maldives. The actor is also serving us some major beachwear goals with her pictures.
Close
Kamala Harris at the US president inauguration ceremony in a deeply symbolic purple ensemble by designers Christopher John Rogers and Sergio Hudson. (Photo: Agencies)
Kamala Harris at the US president inauguration ceremony in a deeply symbolic purple ensemble by designers Christopher John Rogers and Sergio Hudson. (Photo: Agencies)

Style File: US President inauguration signals inclusivity

By Manish Mishra
UPDATED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:45 AM IST
It’s hard to overlook the degree of symbolism in Kamala Harris’ sartorial pick to the inauguration ceremony of President-elect Joe Biden
Close
U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris walks the abbreviated parade route after U.S. President Joe Biden's inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. Biden became the 46th president of the United States earlier today during the ceremony at the U.S. Capitol.(AFP)
U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris walks the abbreviated parade route after U.S. President Joe Biden's inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. Biden became the 46th president of the United States earlier today during the ceremony at the U.S. Capitol.(AFP)

Pearls, purple and American designers mark a new U.S. administration

Reuters
PUBLISHED ON JAN 22, 2021 12:05 AM IST
Kamala Harris, the first woman, the first Black person and the first Asian American to hold the office, chose Black designers for the historic moment.
Close
U.S. President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden stand for the national anthem sung by Patti LaBelle as they participate remotely in a virtual Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service from the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2021.(Reuters)
U.S. President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden stand for the national anthem sung by Patti LaBelle as they participate remotely in a virtual Presidential Inaugural Prayer Service from the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., January 21, 2021.(Reuters)

Joe Biden inauguration ceremony: Celebrities amp up their fashion game

ANI
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 11:22 PM IST
The swearing-in of Joe Biden as the new President of the United States of America took place on Wednesday.
Close
Lady Gaga arrives to perform the National Anthem as President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris watch during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.(Reuters)
Lady Gaga arrives to perform the National Anthem as President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris watch during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, U.S., January 20, 2021.(Reuters)

Passion and fashion: Lady Gaga's powerful anthem at US Presidential inauguration

AP
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 04:21 PM IST
A full-throated, supremely confident Lady Gaga belted out the national anthem at President Joe Biden's inauguration in a very Gaga way — with flamboyance, fashion and passion.
Close
A model sports an Autumn Winter 21-22 hoodie showcased at Milan Fashion Week (Photo: Instagram/DhruvKapoor)
A model sports an Autumn Winter 21-22 hoodie showcased at Milan Fashion Week (Photo: Instagram/DhruvKapoor)

Hoodie is having a moment

By Manish Mishra
PUBLISHED ON JAN 21, 2021 02:36 PM IST
Blame it on Justin Beiber or the Covid-induced work-at-home comfort dressing - the statement hoodie doesn’t seem to be fading outing this year too
Close
Alia Bhatt snuggles up in a turtleneck jumper accessorised with a beanie (Photo: Instagram/AliaBhatt)
Alia Bhatt snuggles up in a turtleneck jumper accessorised with a beanie (Photo: Instagram/AliaBhatt)

Stylistas snuggle up in turtlenecks

By Manish Mishra
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 02:25 PM IST
When one looks at the cinematic history of the classic turtleneck, seventies iconic style gems come to mind - from Ali MacGraw’s preppy jumpers in Love Story (1970) to Amitabh Bachchan’s chunky knits in Kabie Kabhie (1976)
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP