Weekly roundup in tech and retail

News and commentaries

Here’s the most relevant news this week in tech and retail.

In Tech:

  1. A massive 2-year security flaw in OpenSSL, Heartbleed, was discovered April 7 and affected companies scramble to patch it up – from websites to routers
  2. Google news. Google Glass will be available to anyone in the US for 1 day only on April 15 at 6 AM ET, sign up here for the reminder; Google can now continuously scan apps for Android users to protect against malicious code
  3. Dropbox news. Dropbox announces: Project Harmony, which allows for collaboration for Microsoft Office files; Mailbox for Android; and Carousel, an app for photo/video archiving and sharing
  4. Amazon news. Amazon introduces Dash device for scanning and adding items to Amazon Fresh shopping list; Amazon acquires Comixology, a cloud-based digital comics platform
  5. Twitter acquires Cover, an Android lock screen app, which displays apps on an Android lock screen based on context and historical use

In Retail:

  1. LVMH  shares surge Thursday as company reports 9% rise in Q1 2014 like-for-like sales of its fashion and leather goods, Louis Vuitton – a good sign for Nicolas Ghesquire’s appointment as artistic director
  2. After closing its stores in February, Loehmann’s is set to come back online in May
  3. Calvin Klein owner PVH invests in Karl Lagerfeld – the minority investment will allow the company to have the “right of first offer to license the brand in North America
  4. Social shopping app, The Hunt, raises $10M in Series B funding led by Khosla Ventures
  5. Kering, owner of Gucci may acquire lifestyle and sports brands within 3 years as it assesses its Puma brand

Nicolas Ghesquière’s debut at Louis Vuitton

News and commentaries

As Paris Fashion Week starts, one of the most anticipated showings (for me, anyway) is Nicolas Ghesquière’s collection for Louis Vuitton on March 5. Ghesquière was named LV’s artistic director of women’s collection late last year in November. This would be Ghesquière’s first show after his surprising exit from Balenciaga after 15 years. Although the women’s collection is only a fraction of the LVMH empire, I would be very interested to see how it would impact LVMH’s share price which is currently at USD 36.85.


Google Finance

Ghesquière is known for his avant-garde designs and I mean that with no irony. This Vogue article outlines some of those designs. To highlight how his design can propel trends, this crop top was one of the pieces for his last collection Spring 2013 for Balenciaga in 2012, famously worn by Kristen Stewart. Fast forward to today, and the crop top is still on the hot list of the fashion set. More importantly, Ghesquière can also produce something commercially successful, massively so – the Lariat Moto bag. Not that Louis Vuitton needs some reviving, still enjoying the commercial successes under Marc Jacobs but it would be interesting to see how Ghesquière’s vision would affect the brand.

I will definitely be watching this debut closely. Mark your calendars for March 5, 2014 at 10 AM Central European Time. Allons-y!