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The closure of sales points pulled a temporary rest of production. Plants of luxury (and not only) brands are either suspended or redesigned for tailoring masks or workwear.
Kering Corporation (Gucci, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, Yves Saint Laurent and others) handed over three million medical masks to France and is planning to send workwear to Italy.
Another luxury corporation LVMH (Louis Vuitton, Dior, Fendi, Givenchy and others) has sent 40 million masks and respirators to France and continues to manufacture antiseptics. Prada brand also began to sew atypical things at normal times.
H&M Group and Inditex joined the initiative: an established production and logistics system allows companies to create and quickly distribute personal protective equipment for health workers.
Charity for millionaires is a natural process. Successful fashion houses and without urgent need periodically transfer money to good deeds, and the trouble becomes a sprightly impetus for donations and work for a reputation.
Moncler brand has allocated $ 10.9 million for the construction of a hospital in Lombardy. The intensive care and resuscitation departments of three hospitals in Milan received transfers from Prada. Ralph Lauren has sent $ 10 million to fight the epidemic. Dolce & Gabbana, Armani, Benetton also shared their millions.
Everything that happened, of course, could not but affect the fortunes of billionaires who own fashionable corporations. According to Forbes, Frenchman Bernard Arnault (LVMH) lost $ 14 billion in just a couple of days. His colleague, Francois Pinault (Kering), had minus $ 5.9 billion. The owner of our beloved Zara and other Inditex stores, Amancio Ortega, lost his $ 12.8 billion
And this is all - far from the beginning and not the end of interruptions in the work of clothing brands, accustomed to living in the greenhouse conditions of the era of consumerism and billions in profits.
Do not forget that the massive closure in Europe and the USA was preceded by the same situation in China, where factories either closed or half-worked. Moreover, it is in China that about 30% of all clothing in the world is produced.
How will all this affect customers?
The reason for millions of losses is not only the closure of boutiques and the shutdown of production. The Chinese are leaders in the consumption of luxury. It was their voices and laughter that were traditionally heard in luxury stores in Europe, when everything was calm in the world. The flow of customers has stopped sharply due to quarantine in China, and now - due to the closure of European borders.
And in general, of course, demand fell everywhere. The reasons lie on the surface. Firstly, you can not leave the house. Secondly, the financial crisis deprives confidence in the future, and there is no point in thoughtlessly investing in clothes. Thirdly, there is no elementary mood to think about style when the planet is on the verge of disaster.
“Well, let these billionaires go bankrupt!” - you will say and, of course, you will be right. Most people do not care about fashion, much less about financial reports of fashion houses. Only the fashion houses themselves and experts related to the fashion industry are worried. It will be possible to assess the consequences of everything that happens only at the end of this year, or even in 2021. They say the luxury market is shaky 3-4 times more powerful than after the financial crisis of 2009.
The forecasts are different: interruptions in the release of collections, and indeed, the cancellation of collections, the rise in price of already expensive things and luxury goods, the closure of small and medium-sized brands that could not stand the crisis.
What other changes are expected? It is believed that the industry will finally settle down after a difficult time, stop creating horrific mountains of clothing, abandon scandalous marketing, calm consumerism and the cult of brands. And people themselves will begin to appreciate simple truths and minimalism in owning things.
Craftsmanship, exquisite beauty and manual work will become landmarks. Simple silhouettes and the quality of fabrics will kill the fast fashion that they have been trying to kill for a long time, but still.
Trend hunters fantasize, predicting the emergence of new event formats and the improvement of online broadcasting methods when the epidemic subsides. Vanity parades can be replaced by modest events.
Source: Laura Nagapetyan. Photo: bbc.com, vogue, forbes