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Gucci, Valentino and Marni are among the luxury brands launching capsule collections for the Lunar New Year in China, all centered around the Year of the Tiger. As campaigns are ramping up, experts note brands are taking a more cautious approach to avoiding missteps in the fastest growing luxury market.
Gucci’s Tiger collection features various interpretations of the animal – a reflection of creative director Alessandro Michele’s fascination with nature, according to the Italian house – and a pastel palette inspired by traditional Chinese art. From January 14, Canadian retailer Holt Renfrew will host dedicated pop-up experiences with the brand, while Gucci’s US boutiques in cities including New York and Chicago will feature special installations. Balenciaga, Dior, Marni, Louis Vuitton, Valentino, Burberry, Versace and Fendi are also launching – wait – tiger-inspired capsule collections and limited edition products and promoting the holiday on their global social channels.
The stakes are as high as ever. Chinese consumers are the engine of global luxury spending growth and the region is on track to become the largest luxury market by 2025, according to Bain & Company. Finding the right marketing messages for China is key, particularly during the major Lunar New Year holidays. However, the line between success and failure is thin and luxury brands are playing it safe, using a literal interpretation of the zodiac animal as the hook for new collections, says Kim Leitzes, APAC CEO of Launchmetrics.