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The China Edit | ‘KOLs’, Rutson Exits Lane Crawford, Hermès, Luxe Tailors

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The China Edit is a weekly curation of the most important fashion business news and analysis from and about the world’s largest luxury market.

Sarah Rutson in Givenchy | Photo: Phil Oh/

“Op-Ed | Digging For Diamonds Among China’s ‘KOLs’” (The Business of Fashion)
“Engaging local influencers, or Key Opinion Leaders (‘KOLs’), has long been a useful marketing tool for luxury brands active in the China market. With big-ticket purchases motivated largely by recommendations from friends, celebrities and popular bloggers, self-proclaimed influencers have turned sponsored Weibo posts, event appearances and paid photo shoots into full-time jobs.”

“More Mega-Change in the Retail World: Sarah Rutson Leaves Lane Crawford” (The New York Times)
“Another major shake-up is in the works in the world of global department stores: After 21 years, Sarah Rutson, fashion director of Lane Crawford, Asia’s most recognizable luxury emporium, is leaving to ‘pursue new personal opportunities,’ according to an announcement from the store.”

“Hermès Posts Rise in Profit, Despite Slowing Sales in China” (The New York Times)
“Hermès, along with other purveyors of high-end fashion and luxury goods, like Burberry of Britain and Richemont, the Swiss conglomerate that owns Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels, have begun to feel the pinch of a slowdown in spending on luxury goods in mainland China, one of the world’s largest markets for such goods, as the government in Beijing has cracked down on lavish gift-giving.”

“China the Perfect Fit for London’s $6,000 Luxe Tailors” (CNBC)
“The traditional royal green and wooden décor of some shops contrasts with some of the newer stores revealing the legacy of the Row whose reach expands to the U.S. But now the master tailors are looking towards China to tap the growing appetite for bespoke suits in world’s second-largest economy.”

“Wanda, Tencent and Baidu Take on Alibaba with $814M E-Commerce Deal” (Bloomberg)
“Dalian Wanda Group, China’s biggest commercial land developer, is joining with Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Baidu Inc. to form the 5 billion yuan ($813 million) venture. Wanda will have a 70 percent stake while the other two companies will own 15 percent each, Wanda said in a statement.”

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