Chanel’s way is not yet e-commerce. The brand has resisted selling fashion and leather goods online despite a global pandemic that has forced brands to close their stores. The Chanel way is to engage customers with digital tools instead. “We connect our customers with wish lists, we can deliver them to their homes, we can welcome them in store one-on-one, we have developed a series of services adapted to the diversity of situations and it works quite well. . . “
These services will prove useful as the world enters a new period of restrictions to contain the new variant, especially with China’s zero tolerance policy with Covid. “We were closed in Vienna, the previous week it was in Moscow. We are faced with this situation everywhere. I am optimistic for 2022 but also realistic. 2022 can be good from a business standpoint, but can be very difficult from a day-to-day standpoint with many restrictions. “
The recent emergence of the Omicron variant of the Covid-19 will not deter Chanel from hosting its Métiers d’Art show in Paris on Tuesday. But the protocol is strict: guests must present a test of less than 24 hours and proof of vaccination, and wear masks, including outdoors.
The house has chosen Le 19M, the new Chanel building in the north-east of Paris, bringing together all of its Crafts activities as the backdrop for the show. The 25,500 m2 site brings together 11 art houses and 600 artisans, embroiderers, plumassiers, adorners, goldsmiths, pleaters, shoemakers, hatters, milliners, glove makers, tanners, leatherworkers.
“These are workshops of today and tomorrow, you will see young people in their thirties, you will see a lot of 3D printers, 3D simulators”, explains Bruno Pavlovsky, president of Chanel Fashion and Chanel SAS. “It’s a mix of old techniques with a lot of new techniques. “
The Paraffection subsidiary, which controls the specialized workshops, was created by Chanel in 1997 to bring together fashion manufacturers and guarantee their sustainability. Created by Karl Lagerfeld in 2002, the Métiers d’Art collection, presented each year at the beginning of December, showcases the know-how of these houses bought by Chanel over the years. The reason why Chanel created this ecosystem of know-how, explains Pavlosvky, is that “we consider that these companies in the next 10 to 15 years will be the key to our development”. Chanel is not unique in this regard, but vertical integration is the key to its strategy. More recently, Chanel took a majority stake in the Italian knitwear company Paima.