Dior, Lanvin feel optimistic as rich buyers return

Fri Oct 1, 2010 5:43pm EDT
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By Astrid Wendlandt and Marine Pennetier

PARIS Oct 1 (Reuters Life!) - Optimism is in the air at fashion houses Christian Dior and Lanvin, both on the catwalk and in the shops.

Consumers are opening their wallets again according to the heads of Dior and Lanvin, with demand climbing back, in Europe and in Russia and remaining strong in Asia.

"People have started buying again," Dior Chief Executive Sidney Toledano told Reuters after the company's Tahiti- themed show. "It is true in Europe and in New York where I was last week."

Dior is part of LVMH, the world's biggest luxury group whose other brands include Kenzo and Celine.

Echoing Toledano, Lanvin's head was just as confident about his business' future.

"For luxury, the crisis is over," Lanvin Chief Executive Thierry Andretta told Reuters on the sidelines of the fashion company's show on Thursday.

"Consumption is back in Europe... and the market has picked up again in Russia... There was a time when our affluent clients did not want to spend, but now it is over."

Andretta said Lanvin was developing accessories -- traditionally the most profitable part of a fashion business -- with handbags, jewelry and shoes now making up about half of total sales.   Continued...