LVMH signs Blockbuster Olympics deal

Paris – If luxury giant Bernard Arnault allowed himself a self-satisfied smile in last month’s French Open tennis final, now we know why. With the hype surrounding sports-fashion partnerships reaching a crescendo, his company LVMH has comprehensive projects in the works to cement its leading position in the space.

At a Tour Eiffel press conference Monday night, the largest luxury group announced a landmark sponsorship deal with the 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games. The conglomerate will be a “privileged” partner throughout the events, with some of France’s largest and most prestigious houses also preparing to roll out brand-specific initiatives. Commercial: Louis Vuitton, Dior and Berluti will enjoy sponsorship opportunities, including the production of uniforms for athletes, while the beverage division Möet Hennessy will sponsor and supply champagne for celebrations. The medals for the competition will be produced by the luxury jewelry brand Chaumet.

The announcement came just weeks after the group’s largest brand, Louis Vuitton, announced its newest brand ambassador: tennis champion Carlos Alcaraz, the 20-year-old Spaniard who won Wimbledon just days later. As the world of sport reveals itself to be an increasingly rich territory for high-end brands, LVMH’s efforts in the group-wide space have increased. Last year, fashion and shoe maker Berluti teamed up with the Formula One Alpine team while Dior Homme became the stylish partner of Paris Saint-Germain football club. On Monday, the group also announced that it had also signed an ambassador with French swimmer Léon Marchand, who broke the world record for the 400-meter medley the day before.

“Just as the Olympic ideal is to push the limits of (sporting achievement), the beauty of Paris always inspires us to go above and beyond in the pursuit of beauty,” said Chairman Arnaud, the richest person in the world.

LVMH’s big bet on the Olympics (about 150 million euros, although the group declined to comment on the number) could be the biggest coup yet for Antoine Arnault, the eldest son of Bernard Arnault, who was appointed head of communications and image at the group in 2018. .

In recent years, LVMH has sought to shift its corporate image away from that of a clandestine elitist entity animating a fleet of more than 75 luxury brands, and has gradually steered the narrative toward its role as a leading employer, taxpayer and supporter of “Brand France.” The younger Arnault pledged to “mobilize (the group’s) craftsmen and workshops, and put the full force of LVMH behind making the games a success.”

For the group’s brands, sports are a key interface in so-called “cultural” strategies aimed at engaging consumers around affinities that go beyond fashion alone. In recent years, social media-savvy teams and athletes have learned to use tunnel walks, travel days, and other content moments surrounding their sports in opportunities to position the brand outside of the traditional advertising niche or frequency, driving sponsor interest.

“You can really see that sport is becoming more and more connected to culture. Sporting events bring together people from music and cinema more and more. And you see athletes paying attention to fashion, wearing haute couture brands in a way they are not used to. Sport and fashion are starting to have more and more in common,” said Antoine Arnault. Commonalities”.

While big brands like Louis Vuitton (which topped €20 billion, or $22.1 billion, in annual revenue last year) don’t often limit themselves to communicating one national identity, recent months have seen the brand cement its Frenchness by During the travel the campaign was filmed in the scenery of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris and Pharrell’s menswear debut on the Pont Neuf bridge crossing the Seine.

The Paris 2024 Games have suffered construction delays and logistical setbacks, as well as social upheaval that have compromised France’s ability to provide a unified and peaceful forum for the competition in question.

Nevertheless, organizers aim to produce one of the most memorable spectacles in Olympic history: the first time Paris has hosted the games in 100 years is set to include equestrian events in the gardens of Versailles, and fencing under towering glass ceilings in the Grand Palais (under renovation). Currently), cycling around the Buttes Montmartre and swimming in the open waters of the Seine.

A year after the opening ceremony – which will take place along the banks of the Seine before closing with a view of the Eiffel Tower – fears are giving way to excitement for residents of the French capital more often than not. This is certainly the case at LVMH.

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