Luxury Revenues on the Rise

There's no recession in Arnault's Champagne room. Photo: WireImage

Let's take a break from the beauty of Fashion Week for some cold, hard numbers, shall we? LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton and Polo Ralph Lauren's are in, and they're up — despite the recession. Take that! LVMH's revenues rose 8 percent in 2007 to a shiny $22.59 billion, while Polo's revenues were up 11 percent to $1.27 billion (we know, it's almost paltry in comparison). Increased end-of-year sales of pink Champagne contributed to the LVMH fourth-quarter profit boost, which isn't terribly surprising since no one's going to spend December 31 in St. Barts with a shaken-up bottle of Boone's. LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault said, “We are relatively confident regarding the year," and he doesn't expect major consequences from the recession anytime soon. Polo CEO Ralph Lauren said, "The talent of our creative and managerial teams and our increasingly global reach are enviable assets that position us well for long-term growth." Well then! So what did we learn here? A slouchy economy means nothing. Beautiful people will always buy beautiful bags and drink fantastic drinks, and abroad, our "global reach" means that American stuff is as good as being made in Taiwan. So rage on, economy, rage on. —Amy Odell

LVMH, Polo Nets Rise; Arnault Upbeat [WWD]