Published: 2023-06-22 ǀ Updated: 2023-07-04
Study the financial data for Dior.
|December 16, 1946
|30 Avenue Montaigne Paris, France
Delphine Arnault (Vorsitzende)
Antoine Arnault (Vize-Vorsitzender & CEO)
Maria Grazia Chiuri (Kreativdirektorin)
Kim Jones (Kreativdirektor)
|Clothing, cosmetics, fashion accessories, jewelry, perfume, wine & spirits, watches
Christian Dior Cosmetics
Parfums Christian Dior
Christian Dior Couture
Since its founding in 1946, the Dior fashion house has been one of the most famous fashion houses in the world and is also popular for many other luxury goods. Since Dior's death, numerous designers such as Yves Saint Laurent, John Galliano or Maria Grazia Chiuri have influenced the haute couture fashion lines on the catwalks of the world.
1946: Christian Dior founds his fashion house in Paris
The wealthy Frenchman Marcel Boussac, one of the richest men in France at the time, helps the young Christian Dior open his fashion house. With an initial capital of 6 million francs and 85 employees, Dior was given an almost unlimited credit in Boussac's vertical textile company.
1947: The "New Look" revolutionizes women's fashion
His first line revolutionizes women's fashion. Carmel Snow of Harper's Bazaar calls it the "New Look" - a term that would come to define the design of the collections that Dior himself calls Ligne Corolle ("Flower Cup Line") and En 8. Characteristic are the extravagant, fine fabrics that always emphasize the feminine silhouette: The waist is narrow, the hips accentuated, the bodice tight and figure-hugging. Dior's fashion is thus a clear departure from the war years, and within a few years becomes an absolute worldwide success.
1947: "Miss Dior" as the first Daamen perfume
After Dior founded Parfums Christian Dior in March and appointed his childhood friend Serge Heftler-Louiche as director, the first perfume, "Miss Dior," was launched in December and remains a classic to this day. This set the stage for the designer's concept of "total beauty," which was followed by makeup, lipsticks, and a complete skincare line.Christian Dior Ltd. owns 25% of the shares in the perfume division, which is headed by Serge Heftler Louiche, while the manager of Coty Perfumes owns 35% and Boussac 40%.
1948: Expansion to New York
Just two years after its creation, Dior expands abroad. On Fifth Avenue in New York, the designer opens a boutique with an exclusive collection of luxurious, locally designed ready-to-wear and accessories. That same year, he establishes Christian Dior Parfums New York Inc.
1950: Licensing of the name "Dior
Worldwide expansion continues in 1950 with the licensing of the "Dior" name. Dozens of accessories, including ties, stockings, furs, hats, handbags, jewelry, and lingerie, now bear the French fashion house's label. Although critics accuse the designer of watering down haute couture, the concept becomes the cornerstone of the French fashion house's enduring success.By the mid-1950s, the empire included eight companies, 16 subsidiaries, and 1,700 employees on every continent.
1952/53: Further expansion in Europe and Latin America
After opening a boutique in London in 1952, Dior opens its first store in Caracas, Venezuela, in 1953. Not only is the store modeled after the head office at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris, it also employs staff trained exclusively in France. By the end of 1953, there are already stores in Mexico, Canada, Cuba and Italy. Dior fashion accounts for 75% of Paris's fashion exports and 5% of France's total export earnings. By the end of 1953, there are already stores in Mexico, Canada, Cuba and Italy. Dior fashion accounts for 75% of Paris's fashion exports and 5% of France's total export earnings.
1953: Roger Vivier shoes and first lipstick collection
The company begins by producing custom-made shoes for Roger Vivier. In 1958, the company changes its name to Christian Dior by Roger Vivier.With the launch of its first collection of lipsticks in 22 shades, the company continues its commitment to "total beauty" and expands its range of beauty products.
1955: The "A-Line
Although Dior has set several trends in the fashion world throughout his career with the "A Line," "Y Line," "Arrow Line," and "Magnet Line," none of these collections come close to his iconic New Look. However, the A-line, with its trapezoidal cut, narrow shoulders, up-shifted waist and down-flared hem, is very popular because it frees women from the constraints of the wasp waist.
1957: Christian Dior dies - Yves Saint Laurent becomes creative director
Christian Dior dies suddenly of his third heart attack. He is succeeded by 21-year-old Yves Saint Laurent, who had been working as Dior's assistant for two years.At first, the young designer follows Dior in his choice of fabrics and shapes, but soon YSL develops his own style. He eliminated stiffening and padding, making the clothes more comfortable to wear without sacrificing splendor and opulence.
1960: Marc Bohan becomes creative director
After YSL's style became increasingly avant-garde and the fashion press criticized the bohemian look, sometimes harshly, Boussac - still owner of the house of Dior - dismissed the designer. He appointed Marc Bohan as his successor.Bohan, then 34, had already worked as a designer in London for Dior and as an assistant at YSL since 1958. Inspired by the expressionism of Jackson Pollock, his modern silhouettes and elegant, simple cuts would shape the house's image for the next 30 years.
1966: "Eau Sauvage" - the first fragrance for men
With Miss Dior already a classic among women's fragrances, Dior launches its first no less revolutionary men's fragrance, Eau Savage.
1967: The first "ready-to-wear" collection
Philippe Guibourgé, Bohan's assistant, launches Dior's first ready-to-wear collection - not to be confused with the store that had been open since 1948. This first prêt-à-porter collection, with its comparatively low prices, is aimed at a wider public.In the same year, Dior launched its first line of baby clothes under the Baby Dior label, which also had its own sales outlet with a boutique at 28 avenue Montaigne.
1968: Frédéric Castet takes over the fur collection
Frédéric Castet, head of the atelier since 1953, becomes creative director of the Haute Fourrure collections.
1968: Sale of the perfume division
The perfume division is sold very lucratively to Moët et Chandon (since 1971: Moët Hennessy, since 1987: LVMH). However, Dior retained the licensing rights to the products.
1969: Skin care line
A complete skincare line follows in 1969, after Dior had already introduced perfumes and lipsticks.
1970: The first men's fashion collection "Christian Dior Monsieur
After focusing exclusively on women's fashion from the beginning, and later on baby clothes, Dior launches its first men's collection in 1970.
1975: "Black Moon", the first Dior wristwatch
In collaboration with its licensee Benedom of Meyrin, Dior launches its first men's watch, the "Black Moon" model.
1975-1981: Financial crisis of the company
By the mid-1970s, the company is in crisis. It was not only the countless licensing agreements that caused problems for Dior, but also the worldwide flood of counterfeit products that damaged the fashion house's image.In 1978, the group, which now has 60 production sites and 17,000 employees, filed for bankruptcy and was subsequently taken over by the Agache-Willot textile group. The latter also went bankrupt in 1981 after an unsuccessful expansion policy. The state-owned Institut de Développement Industriel then took control of the ailing group and invested about $200 million in the following years.
1984: Acquisition of the company by Bernhard Arnault
A group of investors led by the then 34-year-old Frenchman Bernard Arnault buys Dior for around 80 million dollars after a bidding war with other interested parties. The group quickly divests itself of the group's industrial activities, concentrating on the Bon Marché stores and Christian Dior.
1985-1989: Back on the road to success
Arnault makes Dior the cornerstone of one of the world's largest fashion companies, creating the holding company Christian Dior S.A., which includes Christian Dior Couture, and through which he acquires a majority stake in LVMH in 1989, of which he has been Chairman since 1989.
1989: Gianfranco Ferré replaces Marc Bohan
After around 30 years, Gianfranco Ferré replaces Marc Bohan as Creative Director. For the first time, there is no Frenchman at the head of the creative department - and this is quickly felt in the designs. The Italian breaks with the romantic designs of his predecessors and wins over critics with a refined, sober and austere line.
1991: Restructuring and IPO
Arnault hires the former president of Bon Marché as managing director of Dior. The company is divided into three divisions: 1) women's, lingerie and children's wear; 2) accessories and jewelry; and 3) men's wear. Thanks to a strategy of price reductions in the ready-to-wear sector, Dior increases its sales by 50% between 1990 and 1991. As part of a major restructuring, more than 300 licenses were bought back to regain control of the brand's image and distribution.Dior was listed on the Paris stock exchange in 1991. Sales rose from FF 673 million in 1990 to more than FF 1 billion in 1995, and net income from FF 115 million to FF 156 million over the same period.
1995: Handbag in honor of Lady Diana
When Lady Diana visits Paris, Bernadette Chirac presents her with a Dior bag, which is christened "Lady Dior" in her honor. The princess is considered a great fan of the house and wears the first dress by new chief designer Galliano to the premiere party the following year.
1997: Opening of the Christian Dior Museum
The Musée Christian Dior opens in the house where Christian Dior grew up, Les Rhumbs in Granville, Normandy.
1996: John Galliano becomes the new creative director
Briton John Galliano is to become the new creative director of fashion house Dior. The eccentric designer plays a key role in the company's revival, boosting sales not only with his collections but also with controversial catwalk appearances and a significantly increased advertising budget of 50 million euros, as well as the use of numerous celebrity testimonials such as Charlize Theron, Natalie Portman and Kate Moss. The target group is no longer older women, but the self-confident, modern woman of today.In 2000, Galliano's responsibilities and skills expand even further. In addition to creative direction, he is responsible for prêt-à-porter, accessories, advertising, and communications, setting the tone for a new era in Dior watch design.
1997: Regaining control
The company is also trying to regain control of its image. It bought back its ready-to-wear line and numerous retail stores.At the end of the 1990s, the fashion division's annual sales were around 200 million euros, rising to 300 million euros in 2000 and more than 350 million euros in 2001. In 2002, sales reached nearly 500 million euros, and in 2004, nearly 600 million euros. At the same time, the perfumery and cosmetics sector had sales of around 1 billion euros.
2000: Hedi Slimane replaces Patrick Lavoix
When Hedi Slimane takes over as creative director, Dior wins many new celebrity fans, including Mick Jagger and Brad Pitt. The then 32-year-old designer, who had previously worked at YSL, immediately develops a very modern and androgynous Dior Homme collection, with skin-tight suits that even Karl Lagerfeld loves. It replaced the Christian Dior Monsieur collection, which had been aimed at older men since the 1980s. At the same time, the boutique at 30 Avenue Montaigne opens with a new concept for modern menswear.Slimane's stylized bee, which becomes the trademark of the men's collection, can still be found on shirts, ties and caps, despite the renaming of Dior Homme to Dior Men.
2002: Launch of the Dior Maison collection
Dior is also expanding its range of household goods for the dining room, living room, kitchen and bathroom. It is created in collaboration with Christofle.
2007: Kris Van Assche - menswear creation at Dior Homme
Kris Van Assche replaces Hedi Slimane for menswear. Slimane remains creative director.
2011: Bill Gaytten replaces John Galliano
After helping the House of Dior achieve success and a modern image with his extravagant creations and scandalous appearances, Galliano's career at Dior came to an abrupt end. The company suspended the designer at the end of February 2011 for anti-Semitic remarks and fired him without notice on March 1, 2011 after 15 years. Bill Gaytten became the new interim head designer, but failed to impress with his first collection.
2012: Ralf Simons becomes new chief designer
After 13 months of speculation about Galliano's successor, Dior appoints Jil Sander designer Ralf Simons as his successor. His minimalist designs transform women's fashion into architectural silhouettes.
2015: Serge Ruffieux and Lucie Meier
The two designers Serge Ruffieux and Lucie Meier replace Ralf Simons.
2016: Maria Grazia Chiuri becomes creative director
After Slimane leaves at his own request in October, longtime Valentino designer Maria Grazia Chiuri (born 1964 in Rome) becomes the first woman to be named creative director of womenswear.
2017: LVMH acquires majority stake in Dior
In 2017, the company acquires a further 25.9% of Christian Dior S.A., giving it 100% ownership. In parallel, LVMH acquires the fashion division Dior Couture S.A. for €6.5 billion, giving LVMH full ownership of Dior fashion and fragrances. Conversely, the holding company Christian Dior S.A. retains a 41% stake in LVMH.
2017: "Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams" - Anniversary Exhibition
The retrospective exhibition "Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams" opens at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris and then travels around the world. It pays tribute to the designer's work on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the house.
2018: Kim Jones becomes creative director of Dior Homme
After several successful streetwear collections, Jones now turns his attention to menswear. His first collaboration with KAWS will be followed by others with Raymond Pettibon, 1017 ALYX 9SM, Yoon Ahn and Daniel Arsham.
2022: Re-opening of 30 Avenue Montaigne
After two years of construction, 30 Avenue Montaigne reopens its doors to the public. The gallery is a testament to the visionary free spirit of the founder and his successors, and offers a unique insight into the world of the famous fashion house.
2023: Delphine Arnault becomes Chief Executive Officer
In 2023, Delphine Arnault will be named CEO of Christian Dior Couture.As of December 31, 2022, Christian Dior holds 41% of the share capital and 57% of the voting rights of LVMH, while the Arnault family group also holds approximately 7% of the share capital and 8% of the voting rights of LVMH.
Creative directors overview
|Yves Saint Laurent
|Serge Ruffieux & Lucie Meier
|2016-today (women fashion)
|Maria Grazia Chiuri
|2000-2007 (men's fashion)
|2007-2018 (men's fashion)
|Kris Van Assche