Louis Vuitton shutting down stores in China
"Louis Vuitton closed down three of its Chinese stores, including the one in Guangzhou, the first that was opened in the south, and plans to close down many more throughout the country in the next few months," reported the Financial Times, citing a source close to the matter.
"According to our information, 20% of Louis Vuitton stores in China will disappear by the middle of next year," stated Emmanuel Hemmerle, a Shanghai-based British consultant.
The slowing down of the Chinese economy and the governmental anti-corruption policy implemented at the end of 2012 have clearly forced the French fashion label into reviewing its development strategy in the country.
According to an American report mentioned by the British financial paper, there is still a long way to go before the majority of Chinese will be integrated into the middle class.
Apart from the three closures in Guangzhou, Harbin and Urumqi, Louis Vuitton numbers about fifty stores located in smaller cities, where economic growth has slowed down more perceptibly.
Harbin and Shenyang, which were particularly affected, each had two or three stores, and the label recently stated they were envisaging closures in multi-store cities.
After the publication of its quarterly results last month, luxury group LVMH acknowledged that consumer demand for its goods throughout China was flat, after recording double-digit growth in the first six months of the year.
Louis Vuitton, however, stated that its investment in China continues, mentioning the store openings in Beijing and Hangzhou earlier in the year.
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