M&A in the cards for Fast Retailing, Calvin Klein in China, Gareth Pugh for MAC, 90 years of Gucci, Cardin’s career

Uniqlo 5th Avenue Flagship in New York | Source: High Snobiety

Fast Retailing May Buy Bigger Rival in U.S., Europe on Yen (Bloomberg)
“Fast Retailing Co., Asia’s largest clothing chain, may buy a bigger rival in the U.S. or Europe after the yen’s advance to a postwar high against the dollar boosted the Japanese company’s purchasing power… The billionaire aims to take advantage of the yen’s climb to expand outside Japan, where an unexpectedly long summer damped demand for fall and winter clothing, contributing to a 12 percent decline in profit in the year through August.”

Calvin Klein’s largest market outside the US – China (Red Luxury)
“Outside of the US, China is Calvin Klein’s largest market with 50 percent annual sales growth for the past two years. Its China business has pulled ahead of other international markets… The company continues to expect stellar growth ahead. ‘Our business grew 50 percent in 2010, it will grow 50 percent this year and the way we’re going, we could see 50 percent again next year,’ said Tom Murry, chief executive officer and president of Calvin Klein. ‘Our global business has been growing at 10 to 15 percent, so you can see the business here is outpacing the global business by a long shot.’”

Gareth Pugh: His Dark Materials (Independent)
“‘She’s very beautiful. But she looks like she might kill you,’ says Gareth Pugh of model Alla Kostromichova, the lovely if admittedly somewhat intimidating face of his soon-to-launch, limited-edition line of make-up and accessories, designed in collaboration with Mac. And that just about sums up not only the designer’s aesthetic more broadly, but also this latest venture.”

Gucci coup: the Italian fashion house celebrates 90 years in fashion (Telegraph)
“If an essential element of a successful luxury brand is its history and heritage, then Gucci’s is more richly textured than most. In this, the 90th year since the establishment of the first Gucci boutique, the company has celebrated the opening of the Gucci museum in Florence, its founding city.”

Pierre Cardin on banks and working at 89 (BBC News)
“He began his career making costumes for the film-maker Jean Cocteau. Christian Dior took him under his wing and he launched his own label in 1950… In 1959, Cardin courted their further contempt when he launched the first ever ‘pret-a-porter’ (ready-to-wear) show for the mass market. Later he went into merchandising in a major way, with hundreds of Cardin franchises all over the world, many of them not exactly top-of-the-range.”