Week of 11 October 2011

Meet Theo Fennell, recently introduced to me by Emma Jacobs over at Financial Times. Love their Q & A – gives tremendous insight into the minds of great entrepreneurs. Make sure you check out his website after reading this article. My personal favorite: http://bit.ly/nAtkId

20 questions: Theo Fennell
By Emma Jacobs

Born to a British army family in Egypt, Theo Fennell was educated at Eton College before studying at Byam Shaw School of Art in London. He later trained as a silversmith in Hatton Garden before setting up his own jewellery line in 1982. Theo Fennell is now a global luxury jewellery business, with the founder having made his name by producing quirky pieces for high-profile clients including Sir Elton John, Keith Richards, Liz Hurley and the Beckhams – earning him the nickname “The King of Bling”.


Luxury goods groups forecast a slowdown
By Rachel Sanderson in Milan

Global sales of luxury goods are expected to finish 2011 on a high, but the outlook for next year has been clouded by political and economic uncertainty.

In their annual study Bain & Co, with Italian luxury association Altagamma, raised their growth forecasts for global sales of high-end wares to 13 per cent for this year, citing unexpectedly strong demand in Europe and North America on top of already buoyant sales in Asia and Latin America.
However, for next year the outlook is less clear. Bain & Co declined to provide an outlook for 2012, instead reiterating its forecast of average annual growth of 6 per cent to 7 per cent from 2011 to 2014.


Online flash sales less flashy as inventory shrinks
By Alistair Barr

* Ideeli moves down market in search of more inventory
* Gilt, Rue La La expand into other categories
* Ideeli, FASHIONfix have merchandise made for them
* Vente Privee USA CEO sees ‘bad evolution’

Oct. 17 (Reuters) – The flash sales business has lost some of its flash, forcing online luxury clothing merchants such as Gilt Groupe, Ideeli and Rue La La to radically change their business models. These businesses burst onto the fashion scene during the recession to try to move a mountain of unsold clothes. Now there is less luxury inventory and flash sales sites are bigger. That has forced these companies to pay more or find other ways to get their products. It has also led to questions about whether they can turn growth into profits.

“The original flash sales model for the U.S. exploded during a time when there was this huge abundance of excess inventory,” said Steven Dennis, founder of SageBerry Consulting and a former executive at retailer Neiman Marcus. “There’s not nearly so much of this merchandise around now.”


U.K. Jeweler Bakes a $34,000 Dessert
By Anthony Demarco

It’s being billed as the world’s most expensive dessert and as soon as someone with an extravagant sweet tooth and a flare for romance buys it the Guinness Book of World Records will make it official.

The bejeweled chocolate dessert was the creation of the Wave Jewellery retail store in Kendal, U.K., and Marc Guilbert, the head chef at the nearby Lindeth Howe Country House Hotel. It’s an extravagant show love that will cost a lucky couple 22,000 pounds ($34,700).



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