And so, Slimane would be hanging by a thread: Arnault’s patience

And so, Slimane would be hanging by a thread: Arnault's patience

It seems that Hedi Slimane‘s adventure at the helm of Celine is in its final chapters. Indeed, according to rumours, it’s only a matter of time before the designer (pictured right) will be booted out. Some say the divorce is so ripe that Slimane is already close to a new job at Chanel. But the last word has not been said yet. At this point, it seems that Arnault’s patience is the needle of the scales. Because the rumours about Slimane’s demise at Celine bring character and behaviour into play.

Air of separation

Miss Tweed was the first to write that, after more than six years, there is an air of separation between creative director Slimane and Celine, which is owned by LVMH. As usual, the causes of the possible divorce are intertwined with those related to the designer’s personality and the brand’s financial performance. There had been rumours in the past that Slimane did not speak personally with the brand’s CEO Séverine Merle, in charge since 2017. Only a few people have a direct relationship with the designer. Who oversees every single aspect of the brand. An uncooperative attitude that would almost exhaust Arnault’s (pictured left) patience.

The performance

Of course, Monsieur Bernard, patron and founder of LVMH, can only tolerate certain attitudes in the face of stellar performances. But, according to insiders, it doesn’t really go like that. Ladymax writes that, on the one hand, Celine suffers from the lack of renewal in Slimane’s product offering and thus, on the other hand, the lukewarm market response. Customers in the high and very high segments prefer other labels. Among other things, Ladymax’s analysis also points out, the performance of leather goods “is not good”. Celine is said to have arrived at around EUR 3 billion in revenues per year: a fateful threshold because, if it does not continue to grow, it runs the risk of going backwards. Some speculate that the “all-rounder” Slimane does not want Celine to reach “titanic” dimensions, because it would mean a more articulated internal structure and, therefore, less power for the creative director.

And now, Chanel?

The Chanel chair would be ready for Slimane. A rumour that has been going around for years, not least because of Karl Lagerfeld‘s praise for him. But the brand has grown a lot under the leadership of Virginie Viard, so her chair would be quite firm. Yet, the market always seems to be betting on her replacement.

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