French luxury and fashion giant LVMH said Monday it will buy a minority stake in Stella McCartney’s design house, which has cut ties with LVMH’S fierce rival Kering after 17 years. Stella McCartney, daughter of iconic Beatle Paul, set up her business in 2001 and will “continue as creative director and ambassador for her brand while holding majority ownership,” LVMH said in a statement. The accord will help “accelerate the worldwide development” of the company, it said, adding that further details on the deal would be forthcoming later this year.
Stella McCartney-noted for her environmental credentials and concerns-will also become a “special adviser” to LVMH head Bernard Arnault on sustainable development policies, it added. LVMH is the world’s biggest luxury and fashion company which Arnault has built up steadily in rivalry with Francois Pinault’s Kering group. “I am extremely happy with this partnership with Stella. It is the beginning of a beautiful story together, and we are convinced of the great long-term potential of her (company),” Arnault said in the statement. “
“A decisive factor was that she was the first to put sustainability and ethical issues on the front stage, very early on, and built her (company) around these issues,” he added. Stella McCartney said that since her decision to quit the Kering tie-up and take back control of her company, there had been many approaches “from various parties expressing their wish to partner and invest.” “While these approaches were interesting none could match the conversation I had with Bernard Arnault and his son Antoine,” she said. LVMH announced in May that it was backing pop idol Rihanna in the launch of her own luxury brand.-AFP