How Louis Vuitton Failed to Aquire Gucci

How Louis Vuitton Failed to Aquire Gucci


2 min read

Louis Vuitton is a leading name in the world of luxury fashion. Founded in 1854, the French fashion company has a long and illustrious history of creating high-end products that are wanted by fashion enthusiasts all over the world. But in 1999, Louis Vuitton's reputation took a hit when it attempted to acquire its biggest rival, Gucci.

At the time, Gucci was struggling. The Italian fashion group was in a dire financial state, and its share price was falling. Louis Vuitton saw an opportunity to acquire Gucci and add another prestigious brand to its portfolio. However, what followed was a highly publicized feud between the two companies.

The Battle

Louis Vuitton's first move was to acquire a 34% stake in Gucci. This gave Louis Vuitton some control over Gucci's operations. Gucci was not pleased, and its management launched a campaign to prevent Louis Vuitton from taking over the company.

Gucci's management team began to look for a company that would come to their aid and prevent Louis Vuitton’s acquisition. They eventually decided on the French conglomerate Pinault-Printemps-Redoute (PPR). PPR previously had no interest in Gucci but saw an opportunity to prevent Louis Vuitton from gaining control.

PPR made a series of counteroffers to Gucci's shareholders, offering them a higher price than Louis Vuitton. In the end, PPR was successful, and Louis Vuitton was forced to sell its 34% stake in Gucci at a significant loss.

The Fallout

The fallout from the acquisition was significant for Louis Vuitton. They were humiliated. Louis Vuitton had been outmaneuvered by PPR. The attempted acquisition also cost Louis Vuitton a lot of money, and their shareholders were left wondering why their investment had been so bad.


Louis Vuitton's attempted acquisition of Gucci in 1999 was a disaster. The attempted acquisition cost Louis Vuitton a significant amount of money, and its shareholders were left questioning the management's decision-making abilities. The story of Louis Vuitton's failed attempt to acquire Gucci serves as a cautionary tale about the risks of aggressive expansion and the importance of careful planning.

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