Rihanna's empire continues to grow with the recent announcement of her deal with the luxury conglomerate LVMH. LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis-Vuitton announced that they will launch a Paris-based Fenty maison “centered on Rihanna, developed by her, and taking shape with her vision in terms of ready-to-wear, shoes and accessories, including commerciality and communication of the brand”. This venture means that Rihanna will become the first woman to create an original brand at LVMH, the first Black woman at the top of an LVMH maison, & her line will be the first new house created by the group since Christian Lacroix in 1987. When rumors of the partnership kicked up earlier this year, Vox’s Nadra Nittle explained the significance of the possibility, writing, “From Kanye West to Jessica Simpson — fashion is rife with rappers, singers, actors, and reality stars with their own lines at department stores and the like. But having a luxury fashion house in one’s honor has been off limits to most celebrities.” Rihanna is making fashion history!
Rihanna may be a relative newcomer when it comes to the fashion industry but she's been successful in it from the beginning. The brand "Fenty" was initially introduced to the world as Fenty x Puma in 2016, with her partnership with renowned sportswear company Puma. She was immediately welcomed into the roster of designers who show during Paris and New York Fashion Weeks. Her last runway show was one for the books. It came complete with motocross racers doing fancy jumps & backflips over giant piles of pink sand. Fenty x Puma was credited with a 23 percent growth in footwear sales for the company. She also spent four years as creative director at Puma, kicking off a still-going trend of making streetwear and athletic apparel more accessible to women. Since then, Rihanna has been nothing short of busy. She launched her size-inclusive lingerie line, Savage x Fenty, in May of 2018, & has been constantly releasing new products for her massively successful makeup empire Fenty Beauty which raked in over $550 million in sales during its first year.
The first Fenty collection of ready-to-wear, shoes, accessories, and jewelry will be shown in Paris later this month. According to the Business of Fashion, Rihanna will be a 49.99 percent shareholder in the new label. LVMH has put up over $30 million in cash to fund the venture, while her contribution will be her time, her name, and the value of her personal brand. Unlike other major players in the fashion and music industries, Rihanna doesn’t shift culture by making splashy announcements. She just does things her way, and everyone follows suit. The fact that she’s showing her collection outside of the traditional fashion schedule that debuts womenswear in March and September each year, and that she is establishing her own singular brand rather than collaborating with another brand for credibility—all these suggest that Rihanna’s line will handily establish a new world order for the fashion industry, at least leading many other designers and brands to rethink how they do things.