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The Hemispheres Design Special

From branded street artists to 14th-century cobblers, style takes a turn for both the new and old



Two of fashion’s most powerful conglomerates square off
by Alyssa Giacobbe

Kering (formerly PPR)

Based: Paris
Brands owned: 18
Portfolio highlights: Gucci, Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Sergio Rossi, Stella McCartney
Annual revenues: €9.7 billion in 2012 (more than $12.5 billion U.S.)
Number of stores: 958
Employees: 33,000
Mogul-in-command: François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO, husband of Salma Hayek
Brand MVP: Gucci
Weak link: Puma
Famous ousters: Tom Ford from Gucci, Nicolas Ghesquiere from Balenciaga
Most polarizing designer: Hedi Slimane, for cussing out Cathy Horyn and for dropping the “Yves” from “Yves Saint Laurent”
Rising star: Balenciaga’s Alexander Wang, 29
Iconic items: Bottega Veneta’s $6,000 brand-changing Cabat bag, the Gucci loafer
Place most consumed: Western Europe
Do-gooder effort: Sustainable python sourcing
Latest acquisitions: Scottish clothing brand Christopher Kane, Italian jewelry brand Pomellato
Action against counterfeiters: Threatened eBay with a lawsuit

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Based: Paris
Brands owned: Over 60
Portfolio highlights: Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton, Givenchy, Celine, Fendi, Kenzo, Donna Karan
Annual revenues: €28.1 billion in 2012 (more than $37 billion U.S.)
Number of stores: 3,204
Employees: Nearly 100,000
Mogul-in-command: Bernard Arnault, number 10 on Forbes’s 2013 World’s Billionaires list, sidelines as head of Christian Dior S.A.
Brand MVP: Louis Vuitton
Weak link: Edun (sorry, Bono)
Famous ousters: Arnault rumored to have ordered the firing of French Vogue editor Carine Roitfeld
Most polarizing designer: Givenchy’s Riccardo Tiscie, for unabashedly embracing Kim Kardashian
Rising star: Céline’s Phoebe Philo, 36
Iconic items: Louis Vuitton’s brown and gold Speedy bag, Marc by Marc Jacobs mouse flats
Place most consumed: Asia
Do-gooder effort: Lends private collection Stradivarius violins to young musicians
Latest acquisition: Bulgari
Action against counterfeiters: Sued eBay, won $63 million. Sued Wal-mart, settled for undisclosed sum


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