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Demna, Alessandro & Other Fashion Week Infatuations

Demna
Last week, following the early January news of the exit of chief creative officer Martina Tiefenthaler from Balenciaga, rumors were swirling in Paris that designer Demna was leaving, too. Photo: Geoffroy Van der Hasselt/AFP/Getty Images
Lauren Sherman
February 5, 2024

Call me high-minded or just American, but I reckon the Tapestry-Capri marriage will be a leading topic of conversation during New York Fashion Week, which starts Friday. Late last week, the U.S.-based fashion group that owns Coach, Kate Spade New York, and Stuart Weitzman filed for a mixed-shelf offering, which allows a company to issue different types of securities—including common stock, preferred stock, and debt—so that it can access capital as needed over an extended period. The deadline for its deal with Capri isn’t until February 10, 2025, but I bet it’ll happen long before that, and that everyone will be talking about it at shows, dinners, in texts, etcetera, in anticipation. 

I wouldn’t say I’m skeptical, exactly, of what this gargantuan, $8.5 billion acquisition might do to the stock in the medium term: The team at Tapestry already knows how to budget, cut costs, and make things work more efficiently. They will generate shareholder value. But ever since the deal was first announced in August, my question has been: Does brand equity matter in the grand scheme of things? Is Tapestry going to become a holding pen for also-ran labels that no longer matter to the consumer, or is it going to become a legitimate competitor to the European conglomerates?