LVMH pairs up with Rihanna for new fashion brand

LVMH is launching a new fashion brand with pop idol Rihanna. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
LVMH is launching a new fashion brand with pop idol Rihanna. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

PARIS • Louis Vuitton owner LVMH is launching a new fashion brand with Barbadian singer Rihanna, in a rare move by the French group to set up a label from scratch as it taps into soaring demand for celebrity collaborations in the luxury world.

Fenty - after the Umbrella hitmaker's name, Robyn Rihanna Fenty - will build on the singer's existing joint venture in cosmetics with LVMH, with a full range of clothing, shoes and accessories.

LVMH said last Friday that the launch, rumoured for several months, was "fast approaching", with the first looks set to be presented in Paris before the summer.

The French group has increasingly exploited collaborations with celebrities as well as streetwear designers to attract young customers of luxury goods.

But most ventures have been restricted to limited editions, and LVMH is looking to steal a march on peers by taking its pairing with Rihanna, 31, to another level.

It is the first label the acquisitive group - also home to storied couture houses, such as Christian Dior and Givenchy - has fully created since Christian Lacroix's eponymous brand launched in 1987.

LVMH eventually sold the Christian Lacroix brand in 2005 after it struggled to turn a profit.

Known for her bold fashion statements at red carpet events, Rihanna is followed almost as much for her style as her music, and had already worked with other labels, including sportswear brand Puma on collections under the Fenty name.

These included pastel-coloured sneakers with large bows and cropped hoodies.

The singer has collaborated with shoemaker Manolo Blahnik and has a lingerie range called Savage X Fenty.

Fenty Beauty, launched under LVMH's umbrella in September 2017, had reached nearly €500 million (S$765 million) in sales by the end of last year.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on May 12, 2019, with the headline 'LVMH pairs up with Rihanna for new fashion brand'. Print Edition | Subscribe