The LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton has added a new brand as a recipient of investment in its roster of emerging-stage fashion, cosmetics or accessories companies. The Paris-based luxury conglomerate’s LVMH Luxury Ventures subsidiary revealed that it has taken a stake Madhappy, the 2-year old streetwear-slash-loungewear brand that has found a core following amongst 18 to 30 year-olds thanks to its color streetwear-esque wares and positivity-centric messaging.
Founded in April 2017 by 20-somethings Peiman Raf and his brother, celebrity stylist Noah Raf, along with partners Mason Spector and Joshua Sitt, the buzzy young brand has swiftly found fans both in consumers and investors. Madhappy – which now has outposts on Melrose Place in Los Angeles and Howard Street in New York, and has hosted a score of popups in places, such as Miami and Aspen – is fresh from a $1.8 million seed round in March, drawing funds from MeUndies founder Jonathan Shokrian, College Fashionista founder Amy Levin Klein, founders from Sweetgreen, and Justin Caruso, the son of American retail real estate magnate Rick Caruso.
While the financial details of the deal from LVMH Luxury Ventures standpoint have not been disclosed, a spokesman for LVMH said in 2017 that investments made by the newly-formed subsidiary – which has backed sustainable luxury brand Gabriela Hearst and sneaker/streetwear consignment company Stadium Goods, the latter of which has since been acquired by Farfetch – would generally range from 2 million euros to 10 million euros.
As for the targets of its investments, Reuters reported in the past that LVMH Luxury Ventures “will buy stakes in luxury companies with sales of between 2 million and 5 million euros and a high-growth potential.” While Madhappy’s annual revenues, for its first full year in business at least, fall below that, totaling $1 million for 2018, Business of Fashion notes that LVMH’s “bet on a tiny streetwear label is a sign of the luxury giant’s eagerness to get on board with start-up culture and emerging fashion business models, even as its parent steers some of the industry’s biggest brands.”
“LVMH is not trying to recreate [streetwear] from a distance by copying after the fact,” Shireen Jiwan, founder of Sleuth Brand Consulting told BoF. Instead, by way of investments like this and the appointment of figures like Virgil Abloh to top spots under its main umbrella, “they’re getting in front of it by collaborating with the organic creators of this new way of living, working, wanting, shopping, being.”