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Feb 23, 2018
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Tod's turns to 'Factory' project to keep pace with fast-moving fashion market

Reuters API
Feb 23, 2018

Italian luxury group Tod's will use multiple collections throughout the year to engage better with customers, chairman Diego Della Valle said on Friday, as more fashion brands adapt their strategies to the fast-moving market.

Photo: Tod's

On Tuesday Moncler bid farewell to the catwalk, saying the way forward was to attract customers with new products each month, responding to the increasing pressure on fashion houses to offer more to their younger, internet-dependent and fickle clientele.

Della Valle explained that Tod's project -- dubbed "Factory" in a nod to the New York art studio opened by Andy Warhol in the 1960s -- began seven months ago and entails more collections during the year, as well as one-off limited edition collections created by different designers.

But the Italian entrepreneur, one of the first to signal the need to accelerate the pace of new product launches, did not say whether Tod's would totally stop doing runway shows.

"The business model has changed, everything is more rapid, though in some sort of way more controllable," he said, speaking on the margins of Tod's 2018/19 fall-winter show in Milan.

He added that fashion groups could not "give news every six months" with just two traditional collections a year and that engaging in social networks -- one of the main drivers of luxury consumption -- needed to be paired with high-quality products.

Tod's reported a 3.1 percent fall in revenue for 2017 while many luxury goods rivals such as France's LVMH enjoyed a sales bounce thanks to a recovery in Chinese demand.

The Italian group, known for its Gommino loafers, said it would focus on its more classic lines of clothes and accessories in a strategy that could weigh on growth in the short term.

Part of the overhaul has involved a rejig of management -- defined by Della Valle as a "consensual change" -- with the replacement of long-serving CEO Stefano Sincini with Bulgari sales executive Umberto Macchi di Cellere.

French label Roger Vivier, one of the group's brands, and whose founder is credited with inventing the stiletto heel, said this month that it was parting company with its long-time designer Bruno Frisoni.


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