Retail in Asia


‘Quiet luxury’ trend benefits Brunello Cucinelli as brand achieves highest turnover yet

The ‘quiet luxury’ trend, a shift towards understated elegance and refined minimalism, gained momentum in previous years, dictated by pop culture and an economic landscape that discouraged overt, flashy styles. In turn, consumers are seeking out clothing and accessories that exude sophistication without logo-centric styles that dominated the industry for years.

With a focus on quality craftsmanship, timeless designs, and subtle detailing, the trend favours simplicity and a sense of quiet confidence, and the rise of fashion brands embracing the ‘quiet luxury’ or ‘stealth wealth’ ethos comes as no surprise. One such brand that has become fashion’s poster child for the trend is Brunello Cucinelli, and its financial results for fiscal year 2023 speak for itself.

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Source: Brunello Cucinelli

Despite a softening in demand across the luxury sector, the fiscal year of 2023 proved to be highly successful for the Italian brand, with revenues reaching EUR1.14 billion (USD1.24 billion), an impressive growth of 23.9 percent at current exchange rates compared to the previous year, or 26.0 percent at constant exchange rates.

The brand’s exceptional sales quality was evident across all geographical areas and distribution channels, reflecting its positioning in the highest and most exclusive luxury segment. Geographically, the Americas experienced a growth of 20.8 percent, Europe saw an increase of 16.8 percent, and Asia achieved an outstanding 40.4 percent surge in sales. Distribution-wise, retail sales soared by 30.2 percent, while wholesale recorded a respectable growth of 13.4 percent.

Asia in particular has proven to be a highly lucrative market for Brunello Cucinelli, with revenues reaching EUR306.8 million, accounting for more than a quarter of total sales at 26.9 percent. The region continues to captivate the brand’s attention due to its exceptional performance and substantial growth potential.

Source: Brunello Cucinelli

Notably, in China, the positioning of the Brunello Cucinelli brand has been consistently reinforced year after year. The Chinese market, characterised by significant expansion, has witnessed a growing appreciation and loyalty from end customers. This positive trend underscores the brand’s success and its ability to resonate with discerning Chinese consumers.

The company also pointed to remarkable growth in the Middle East, a relatively young and emerging market for Brunello Cucinelli, while Japan and South Korea remained bright spots for the brand’s performance in Asia.

Brunello Cucinelli, executive chairman and creative director, commented: “The great orders in our portfolio for the Spring-Summer 2024 collection and the excellent start of sales in our own boutiques and multi-brand stores result in a most optimistic outlook for the first half of this year. In view of all this, we are confirming our great confidence for this year, where we envisage a gracious, comfortable and healthy growth of around 10 percent.”

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Brunello Cucinelli’s commitment to future success is evident through significant investments of approximately EUR78 million in 2023, primarily focused on commercial and handicraft production as part of a major three-year plan.