VERSACE’s CEO, Jonathan Akeroyd, has outlined the reasons why Versace won’t be showing its Atelier Versace spring/summer 2017 collection at Couture Fa
shion Week this weekend – or in July at the autumn/winter 2017 couture shows.
“At the moment, we do six shows a year, and my feeling is: that’s a lot of shows,” said Akeroyd (referring to two men’s, two women’s and two Versus Versace shows), reports The New York Times. “Eight, if you count couture, seems excessive. And we all know the model is changing quite a lot, so why not take the opportunity to try something new?”
The changes he is referring to concern the adoption of the see-now, buy-now model by multiple brands (something Versace was one of the first to do with its Versus Versace brand); the amalgamation of menswear and womenswear; and the decision made by a handful of women’s ready-to-wear brands to come off the official womenswear schedules in February and September and move their shows to fall in line with the menswear showcases in January and June, giving their collections longer on the shop floor.
Instead, Versace will hold “major client events” to present its couture collection designed by creative director Donatella Versace – a savvy move that has the potential to be more client facing than industry focused, but not one that has been designed to save the house money according to Akeroyd. “It’s the time and intensity of producing a show,” he explained of his reasons to shake up its presentation methods. “The investment has not changed; the atelier is the same size.”
Akeroyd joined Versace last year from Alexander McQueen where he was CEO for 12 years. “Versace is an iconic lifestyle brand recognised globally as a premier name in luxury,” he said at the time. “I look forward to implementing a long-term business strategy that supports the visionary and creative direction of Donatella Versace and her team.”