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prada selling church's stake?

faustian bargain

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http://www.fashionunited.co.uk/news/prada.htm#270406

Prada may sell Church shoemaker stake

The Italian luxury group Prada could be forced to sell its 45-per cent stake in the top shoemaker Church's because of financial difficulties, the daily La Stampa reported yesterday.

“Despite the disposals made so far, we have not managed to achieve the hoped-for results,” an unidentified merchant banker told the daily.

“New disposals could be envisaged and in that case, the holding in Church's will be put on the market,” the banker added. “A definitive decision has yet to be taken,” he said, adding that it was down to the Prada group's chairman Patrizio Bertelli, designer Miuccia Prada's husband.

Banks are concerned about the group's heavy debts. According to the latest figures available at the end of January 2005, consolidated debt on group level was 818 million euros ($1.01bn). Prada has already got rid of two loss-making labels, Helmut Lang and Jil Sander, which had weighed heavily on its accounts for several years.

When it announced the cessation of the Helmut Lang label on March 17, the group said this was the final step in the strategic reorganisation plan announced at the end of 2005.

26 April 2006
 

Etienne

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I read various takes on that news on some other French forums. According to some, interested parties include LVMH (Dior, Berluti, etc.), PPR via their Gucci affiliate (YSL, etc.) and Hermès (Lobb, etc.).

Some other news I heard was that Prada was reconsidering the sale and might even increase its stake.

Edit : see http://business.timesonline.co.uk/ar...167376,00.html
 

GreyFlannelMan

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Originally Posted by Tibo
I've never seen any positive effects to Prada owning Church's.

Has Prada ownership benefited any acquired company? They also destroyed Helmut Lang and Jil Sander.
 

globetrotter

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but I can't see it going back to its previous quality. prado bought it, broke it, and is now going to throw it back.
 

timekeeping

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Originally Posted by globetrotter
but I can't see it going back to its previous quality. prado bought it, broke it, and is now going to throw it back.

I agree. It's difficult for any company to reduce quality levels and then raise it back to what it was. How long did it take Brooks Brothers to get its quality back up?

It's sad that Prada ruined so many great brands.

I wouldn't say that Prada bought it then broke it and is now throwing it back. I'd say what Prada had planned for Church's didn't work out.

Small retailers in my part of the world is pissed off with Church's to no end as it became totally non-responsive post-Prada. That could have contributed to the troubles Church's is in.

Having experienced pre- and post- Prada Church's, I can say that the difference is almost heaven and earth.

Arguably, LVMH is doing similar things to Beluti and that seems to be working out. I have no experience with pre-LVMH Beluti, though.
 

Tibo

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When I keep thinking about it, I can't really explain what Prada did to/with Church's (that is, other than lowering its quality).

Can't say I have been seeing changes in terms of distribution, marketing, products, ... Am I wrong ?
 

chorse123

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Isn't the price higher and the quality lower? Also, they had those awful rubber soles that spelled out CHURCH. I'm not surprised the brand failed under Prada. They were charging an awful lot of money for basic shoes made from mediocre leather.
 

globetrotter

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Originally Posted by Tibo
When I keep thinking about it, I can't really explain what Prada did to/with Church's (that is, other than lowering its quality).

Can't say I have been seeing changes in terms of distribution, marketing, products, ... Am I wrong ?



several of the shoes that I liked were dropped, and a lot of hte new styles look like crap. the quality doens't seem as good. several retail branches, that I know of, closed.
 

RJman

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I don't think Church's was ever at the level of C&J Handgrade, let alone EG/Lobb. However, it really did seem to hit bottom under Prada. I don't know if it did so in terms of leather quality -- they've never had really great leather -- but the designs were quite bad, blobbier than the old Church's, which were never sleek. The only thing Prada did right was those ads of people jumping up in the air. The sneakers with the Church's logo sole were an abomination. The price increase in Church's is deplorable, although they seem to have a Tyrwhitt-like permasale on at the DC store. I've noticed when I walk by their shops in Paris that they seem to have a nicer last now and some actually interesting designs (spectators or co-respondent shoes among others). If the price was reduced to real levels -- maybe $300 or $400 -- they might be reasonably attractive. However, they seem likely to stay at the 500 euro mark. When shoes like C&J and Albaladejo are cheaper, there's something really wrong with Church's pricing.
 

globetrotter

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Originally Posted by RJman
I don't think Church's was ever at the level of C&J Handgrade, let alone EG/Lobb. However, it really did seem to hit bottom under Prada. I don't know if it did so in terms of leather quality -- they've never had really great leather -- but the designs were quite bad, blobbier than the old Church's, which were never sleek. The only thing Prada did right was those ads of people jumping up in the air. The sneakers with the Church's logo sole were an abomination. The price increase in Church's is deplorable, although they seem to have a Tyrwhitt-like permasale on at the DC store. I've noticed when I walk by their shops in Paris that they seem to have a nicer last now and some actually interesting designs (spectators or co-respondent shoes among others). If the price was reduced to real levels -- maybe $300 or $400 -- they might be reasonably attractive. However, they seem likely to stay at the 500 euro mark. When shoes like C&J and Albaladejo are cheaper, there's something really wrong with Church's pricing.


RJ - I don't think Church's was evr supposed to compete, quality wise, with EG/Lobb. they were for people who knew that they didn't want to wear Florshiem/rockports, but didn't know, couldn't afford to go the next level. My first 3 pair of "real" shoes (after 2 pair of paper thin italian shoes that I got at 22) were church. 2 of those 3 pair are still in my rotation. and I thought that I knew alot about shoes at the time, but I really didn't.
 

RJman

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No, Church's exist as a default good shoe, proper to an upper-middle(-middle) class existence, at least in England, and probably in (more conservative bourgeois circles in) Italy and France as well. A household name, for many I imagine the next known step up would be Lobb (St James), simply since many people can't be bothered to learn about or look into C&J, Green, Tricker's, etc. I remember some years ago, when there was some hubbub in the British press about then PM-hopeful William Hague's attire -- Poole suits, Budd shirts, T&A ties and Cleverley shoes. An old city gent was asked for his opinion and stated that Cleverley is for people who can't afford Lobb. The gent in question, of course, was wearing his old Church's. Quite clearly off the mark, given what I've heard about the relative merits of Lobb and Cleverley's work nowadays, but clearly informed by this limited constellation of names.

In point of fact, Hague's Cleverleys were made to order, probably C&J.
 

globetrotter

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Originally Posted by RJman
No, Church's exist as a default good shoe, proper to an upper-middle(-middle) class existence, at least in England, and probably in (more conservative bourgeois circles in) Italy and France as well. A household name, for many I imagine the next known step up would be Lobb (St James), simply since many people can't be bothered to learn about or look into C&J, Green, Tricker's, etc. I remember some years ago, when there was some hubbub in the British press about then PM-hopeful William Hague's attire -- Poole suits, Budd shirts, T&A ties and Cleverley shoes. An old city gent was asked for his opinion and stated that Cleverley is for people who can't afford Lobb. The gent in question, of course, was wearing his old Church's. Quite clearly off the mark, given what I've heard about the relative merits of Lobb and Cleverley's work nowadays, but clearly informed by this limited constellation of names.

In point of fact, Hague's Cleverleys were made to order, probably C&J.


RJ - I was a little thrown by your starting the paragraph with "No" - we are agreeing, are we not?
 

RJman

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Originally Posted by globetrotter
RJ - I was a little thrown by your starting the paragraph with "No" - we are agreeing, are we not?
No, we are agreeing.

doh.
 

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