On March 30th, the House of Dior held its second Haute Couture show in Shanghai at Five on the Bund. This time, Christian Dior reprised its S/S 2013 Haute Couture Collection, which was first presented in January during Paris Couture Week.
Celebrities and Dior China’s VIPs and elite clients attended the glamorous event donning Dior’s latest S/S ready-to-wear collection by Creative Director Raf Simons. Clients were able to book appointments a few days prior to the show to make their purchases.
Dior’s CEO Sidney Toledano tells The Business of Fashion that the brand was winning new couture customers and that China was the “big market of tomorrow.”
Although haute couture is not a profitable business segment for fashion brands, it is essential in communicating a luxury brand’s image; and prestigious events such as the shows play an instrumental role in maintaining existing client relationships and even attracting new clients.
“Haute Couture is what gives our business its essential essence of luxury. The cash it soaks up is largely irrelevant. Set against the money we lose has to be the value of the image couture gives us. Look at the attention the collections attract,” says Bernard Arnault, chairman of LVMH.
Other brands also recognize the importance of the Chinese market to luxury. Chanel now visits the country twice a year to fulfill demand from private clients after having presented a “demi-couture” show in China in 2009. China luxury sales remain robust, albeit a bit slower, and brands will continue to pour money into glossy events to promote greater brand equity.
photo credit: dior