Haider Ackermann Out At Berluti; Kris Van Assche Could Take On The Role
BERLUTI SPRING 2018 MENSWEAR.
PARIS — Another season and these fashion houses are still playing musical chairs. After a year and a half, Haider Ackermann exited Paris-based brand Berluti. It is speculated that Kris Van Assche, who left Dior Homme last month (see it here) could take over Ackermann‘s role at the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton owned brand. Former Louis Vuitton‘s menswear artistic director Kim Jones was named Dior Homme‘s new artistic director (see it here). LVMH has hired Off-White‘s founder and designer Virgil Abloh to lead men’s design at the Louis Vuitton (see it here). He becomes Louis Vuitton’s first African-American artistic director, and one of the few black designers at the top of a French heritage house.
After just three seasons with its creative director, Berluti has parted ways with Haider Ackermann.
Antoine Arnault, chief executive officer of Berluti, paid tribute to the designer in a statement about the split.
“Haider has been at the core of the evolution of Berluti’s collections and image these past few seasons. I want to thank him for everything he has accomplished since his arrival. His feel for materials, colors, and his wonderful shows will always be linked to the history of the house,” he said.
Ackermann said: “I am immensely proud to have been able to put my creativity at the service of this house with an exceptional know how, whilst working with a passionate team. I thank them for their commitment.”
Berluti added that it would reveal his successor shortly.
Ackermann’s shocking departure has speculated that Kris Van Assche could take over the role. LVMH said last month that the Belgian designer would take up a new assignment within the group, but did not provide specifics at the time.
Ackermann joined Berluti in September 2016. During his tenure, the designer introduced a more languid, feminine edge into the collections, which were shown on men and women.
Ackermann created his namesake label in 2001, selling women’s ready-to-wear. His creations have been worn by Ciara, Kanye West, Janet Jackson, Victoria Beckham, and others.
Ackermann is a relative newcomer to the men’s wear game, having shown his first collection as a guest at the Pitti Uomo trade fair in 2010 and staged his first Paris men’s wear show under his own label in 2013.
Sources said he lacked in-depth knowledge of accessories, which are core to the Berluti business, with footwear and leather goods accounting for around 70 percent of sales, according to industry estimates. The brand is known for its unusual colors and patinas, plus a court shoe fashioned from a single piece of leather without any seams.
During his tenure at Berluti, Ackermann continued to show his signature women’s and men’s collections, which are produced by Belgian entrepreneur Anne Chapelle.
LVMH does not break down sales by brand in its core fashion and leather goods business group, but reported “solid growth” at Berluti in its most recent full-year results. Industry sources estimate the brand generates revenues in the region of 190 million euros.
“Berluti delivered excellent results in all its markets and opened its first store in Australia. Creative director Haider Ackermann has brought a bold, modern aesthetic to the brand. Berluti’s leather goods lines are making strong headway. Footwear saw solid growth and the brand is expanding its range of exceptional products,” LVMH said in its annual report.
Son of LVMH chairman and CEO Bernard Arnault, Antoine Arnault assumed the management helm of Berluti in 2011 and set out to create a luxury men’s house to mirror such female-driven brands as Fendi and Céline within the vast luxury group.
Today, Berluti counts 52 boutiques worldwide and 23 wholesale accounts, with store openings planned this year in the U.K., Australia and China.
The brand was founded in 1895 by a transplanted Italian and is famous for such celebrity clients as Andy Warhol, Pierre Bergé, Jean Cocteau, Alain Delon, Dean Martin and Yves Saint Laurent. LVMH acquired Berluti in 1993 and added leather goods in 2005.
BERLUTI SPRING 2018 MENSWEAR.
Photos Credit: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigital.tv