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He’s the son of Miuccia Prada and Patrizio Bertelli — large footwear to fill. However Lorenzo Bertelli, 32, a former rally automobile driver, has realized as quick because the automobiles he as soon as raced and has emerged in a central function working advertising and marketing and company social accountability at Prada Group.
Bertelli, who got here on board along with his dad and mom’ enterprise in 2017, has large plans for Prada. The present record features a attainable transfer into resale, making profitability and sustainability align, and assembly a broader shopper base with a brand new emphasis on open dialogue, led by Prada’s new co-creative crew of Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons.
“The technique is to be able to take the enterprise [forward] when all people comes again to normalise as a result of we are able to see as quickly as they open, they’re hungry to spend their cash,” Bertelli says, chatting with Vogue Enterprise from his Milan dwelling by way of Zoom.
He’s seated in entrance of a wall of crusing memorabilia, watercolours and boat hull line drawings. Strict quarantine measures have stored him away from the thirty sixth America’s Cup in Auckland, the place the Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli superyacht is difficult quickly. That’s irritating, however Bertelli is upbeat about Prada, forecasting a steady second-half for luxurious.
Bertelli is over three years into his tenure overseeing advertising and marketing, with sustainability added extra lately. His remit consists of Miu Miu and Church’s and Automobile Shoe manufacturers, reporting to his dad and mom, who’re co-CEOs.
Sustainability is core to his agenda — and sustainability, he believes, doesn’t require a sacrifice of profitability. He’s credited with pushing by means of a plan to part out nylon by the tip of this yr in favour of recycled nylon. “I believe Re-Nylon is the proof we are able to do one thing sustainable for our planet and make it related by way of income,” he says. “The most important message immediately is the enterprise may be worthwhile and sustainable.”
Upcycled by Miu Miu, a set of classic attire reworked and remodeled by Miu Miu, has been one other success that may proceed. Bertelli has additionally been engaged on a resale providing at Prada for over a yr and a half, more likely to be immediately owned by the corporate. “You will notice one thing related from us sooner or later,” he says. “It took us rather a lot to work on one thing that would work that’s not only a advertising and marketing message, one thing that’s related.”
In future, Bertelli says the “greatest sustainability problem” is to scale back carbon emissions, notably by means of the availability chain. Encouraging suppliers to alter to sustainable supplies and power sources is the toughest activity. Extra authorities assist would assist, he says, whereas acknowledging that “it’s elementary large teams like us are the drivers of this transformation”.
Prada is on a roll proper now. In December, gross sales returned to pre-pandemic ranges, forward of the broader market. Regardless of enforced retailer closures, Prada Group is anticipated to report a revenue of €10 million on €2.4 billion of revenues when its annual outcomes are launched this week, in keeping with analyst estimates.
That efficiency has been boasted by a medley of strategic initiatives. They embody a drive to scale back wholesale and to chop again on markdowns plus a concentrate on reaching native prospects with a mixture of newer sustainable merchandise like Re-Version luggage. There’s additionally been the launch of a high-profile new period of co-creative path supported by Lorenzo’s advertising and marketing acumen.
Foremost within the record of priorities of late for the younger inheritor has been responding to the pandemic with a brand new digital vogue present format. That included influencer viewing events and post-show conversations with Mrs Prada and Simons speaking frankly with college students and inventive trade figures comparable to Marc Jacobs, filmmaker Lee Daniels and DJ Richie Hawtin aka Plastikman.
Bertelli is delighted with the outcomes. “Individuals like being a part of the dialog and the appropriate steadiness is to make individuals a part of the dialog however nonetheless protecting it related and pleasing for people who find themselves not a lot concerned in vogue,” he says. The emphasis on open dialogue has resonated in an age of transparency — Prada’s social media metrics outpaced rivals over vogue month, Bertelli says. The technique will evolve to focus on a extra basic shopper fascinated by music, films, tradition and sport.
This empathetic response to the cultural temper has been famous by model consultants. “The model is coming into its personal once more,” says Rebecca Robins, chief studying and tradition officer at Interbrand. “Prada has been the maker of a collection of strikes which can be deeply in tune with the context wherein we live, which we see mirrored within the model power.”
Prada Autumn/Winter 2021.
Analysts had been additionally impressed by Prada’s concentrate on native prospects throughout Western Europe and in China in 2020. Bertelli notes the excessive prices of promoting in China however applauds the “open-minded” perspective of Chinese language shoppers. In Western Europe, he provides, “the buyer is someway extra opinionated on what they need.” Amongst successes in Europe have been pop-up shops and new merchandise just like the Re-Version luggage. He’s betting gender-neutral wearables are again in — an American Specific collaboration with architect Rem Koolhaas and artist Kehinde Wiley for a contactless bracelet is deliberate for later this yr.
Bertelli has proven a willingness to experiment with digital, given the shock launch of the Automobile Shoe model on Amazon’s Luxurious Shops. The luxurious sector has been cautious of this initiative, citing Amazon’s lack of luxurious expertise and the risk from counterfeits — and even alleging the platform may use brands’ data to make related merchandise priced cheaper. Bertelli explains that Automobile Footwear, which sells driving footwear for round €360, has no US retailer presence. The check with Amazon’s Luxurious Shops, which is unlikely to be prolonged to different Prada Group manufacturers, was merely considered as a “good alternative”. Elsewhere, digital advertising and marketing is the main focus. “We attempt to be extra related with extra digital content material within the second half of the yr once we count on the market might be extra steady.”
Lorenzo Bertelli represents the way forward for Prada Group. Simply 20 per cent of Prada S.p.A. shares are listed, with the remaining 80 per cent held by household holding firm Prada Holding S.p.A. — right here is a lot at stake for the elder son (his brother, Giulio, is a yr youthful).
“For me it’s just the start,” he says, looking forward to the subsequent few years. “It’s not simply in regards to the advertising and marketing however the entire (tradition) and actually having the ability to specific this era… of our group to our shopper. After which on the finish you wish to do higher by way of income.”
He’s not phased by any of the challenges forward. “I’m a really aggressive individual,” he says, noting the pressures from competitors within the luxurious trade. “I believe it’s what makes issues thrilling.”
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