MILAN — “Surprising without being intimidating.” That’s the objective Marco Pirone set for the brand new course of Italian model Harmont & Blaine, which is rooted in a Mediterranean interpretation of the preppy look.
The govt, who joined the corporate final August as chief govt officer, has nice ambitions for the ready-to-wear label, which he thinks “has to attract new consumers with a more contemporary vision.” For Pirone — who was beforehand govt vp of Kiton, which he joined from Louis Vuitton, the place he was CEO of the Italian division — it’s undoubtedly not a matter of age, however extra of perspective. “We are lucky to have very loyal consumers, who know what to expect from us. That’s great but not enough. We want to evolve and become more appealing for a wider range of people with a new focus on the international markets,” he stated.
In preserving with this imaginative and prescient, Harmont & Blaine, which is celebrating its twenty fifth anniversary this yr, is launching a capsule assortment of 25 shirts crafted from sustainable cotton and linen whereas at Milan males’s style week on June 21 will debut a capsule assortment developed with Milan-based designer Andrea Pompilio.
“Andrea has demonstrated to be a designer who is able to interpret the DNA of a brand giving it a signature cool twist and that’s exactly what we expect from this collaboration,” stated Pirone, revealing that the capsule might be unveiled by way of digital content material filmed in Naples, the model’s hometown.
“What I like about Harmont & Blaine is the color sense, its shirting heritage and its Neapolitan origins that really define the brand’s taste and spirit, and that I personally share with the company,” stated Pompilio. “Our spontaneous encounter reflected in an idea of men’s wardrobe that can create a dialogue with a new audience. It’s an enriching challenge for both of us and I wanted to define it through the concept of Made in Naples.”
The collaboration with Pompilio, which has been signed for 2 seasons, will improve the steps that the model, recognized for its dachshund brand, is taking to inject a brand new spin into its fundamental collections. “I think that the first signs of this new course are already visible in the winter collection, but it’s in the next spring lineup where consumers will be really able to see the difference,” Pirone stated.
Harmont & Blaine, which in 2014 acquired an funding from funding fund Clessidra, presently generates about 80 % of its gross sales in Italy. “Getting more international is another important goal that we set,” stated Pirone. “In the next three years, we expect to have international markets accounting for 40 percent of our business.”
While the model has stable distribution in Spain and Mexico, the corporate remains to be not current in China. “Starting from 2022, we are approaching the market with a retail presence in Beijing or Shanghai,” stated Pirone.
According to the CEO when the corporate could have stable bases within the Far East, the main focus might be placed on the United States, the place the model is already registering robust on-line gross sales. “The United States, along with Spain, are the second market for our e-commerce,” stated Pirone, who doesn’t count on to open immediately operated retailers within the U.S., the place Harmont & Blaine is current with a boutique in Miami operated by a neighborhood associate.
An organization with a powerful retail element, accounting for over 60 % of its enterprise, Harmont & Blaine, which operates 70 retailers in Italy, will this yr kick off a plan to refurbish its most essential shops. “The revamping of our fashion proposal needs to be supported by the look and feel of our boutiques,” stated Pirone, who can also be working to bolster the model’s ladies’s providing. While 90 % of the corporate’s gross sales are of males’s merchandise, the manager defined that in some retailers, 25 % of the purchasers are ladies, primarily making purchases for his or her male mates, husbands or sons. “Even if we remain a men’s label, we want to be more appealing for these women, offering them products that reflect the investments we are making in our core business.”
Heavily reliant on its retail community in Italy, in 2020 Harmont & Blaine registered a 30 % lower in revenues in comparison with 2019, which the corporate closed with gross sales of 95 million euros. “I think we will return to pre-COVID-19 levels in 2023,” Pirone stated, highlighting that 2021 will nonetheless be troublesome and that 2022 might be marked by a gradual return to normality. “Honestly, I don’t expect any rebound effect in the fashion industry, differently from the food and travel industry,” he stated.
Harmont & Blaine is the official style associate of AC Milan, offering the soccer group with its off-the-field uniforms. “It’s a very prestigious partnership and we are happy with the return that it is bringing us,” stated Pirone, including that the style firm has created a devoted capsule assortment below license for the soccer group.
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