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- 12 Apr 2013
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Big Bang Rebrand: The PPR Transformation

PPR group changes its name for KERING

Rony Zeidan, founder & chief creative officer of RO New York Inc, examines the biggest branding surprise in the conglomerate luxury world, PPR’s recent name change to KERING

A very well crafted rebrand requires, time, patience, vision, belief, and creativity, which are attributes reflective of the luxury industry, and synonymous with branding methodologies and processes. So what is behind PPR’s decision to rebrand? How? When? did this happen? This is a very interesting case study to observe and analyze.

In recent times, there has been an interesting overlap between brands and their leaders, where in certain cases brands carry the names of the founders and the reflection of the founder’s personality is seamless. And in other cases, the brands embody an entirely other stand-alone entity, separate from their leaders.

Yet, in the rebrand of PPR, there are a lot of tie-ins with François-Henri Pinault, Chairman of the Board and CEO of PPR. Let’s start with the name ‘Kering’, which at first glance sounds and looks like a typo, due to it’s proximity to the word ‘Caring’; apparently an intentional move on behalf of PPR.

 The industry is having a hard time assimilating going from a name that sounds like a logo, to a name that sounds like a feeling 

‘Ker’ means HOME in Breton, the origin of Mr. Pinault, which is synonymous with the new positioning of caring and nurturing of the apparel and accessory portfolio of brands. “Kering is a name with meaning, a name that expresses both our purpose and our corporate vision. Strengthened by this new identity, we shall continue to serve our brands to liberate their potential for growth,” says Mr. Pinault.

The brand’s mascot is a stylized OWL symbol that draws from the heritage of Mr. Pinault’s family and symbolizes vision and wisdom. All-in-all it is a nod to Mr. Pinault celebrating his career and onward thinking business approach towards his portfolio of brands: Stella McCartney, Bottega Veneta, Gucci, Girard-Perregaux, Alexander McQueen, Christopher Kane….

I admire the bold face change of the brand. It takes a strong and visionary leader to embark on such a venture, and an inhibited group to have the patience and wisdom to perfect it. The overall reaction I’ve been witnessing in the industry is having a hard time assimilating going from a name that sounds like a logo PPR, to a name that sounds like a feeling.


François-Henri Pinault unveils the new logo

Time will tell if the move was right from a branding perspective, but one thing is sure, is that it doesn’t matter. A strong luxury conglomerate will not be affected by a name change, instead they are shedding their skin from the past, and bringing on a newer skin that will glisten and shine in the world of luxury.

Kering is ready to take over the luxury world; Could this name change signify a whole new strategy of luxury domination?

To further investigate Branding on Luxury Society, we invite your to explore the related materials as follows:

- The Art of Luxury Brand Design: The Unsung Hero?
- What Makes for a Successful Luxury Re-Brand?
- What the 2012 BrandZ™ Top 100 Means for Luxury


RO New York is a strategic, multi-disciplinary, full service design and advertising agency with a global sensibility, specialising in fashion, beauty and luxury brands. RO partners with clients to translate brand stories visually through advertising, product & package design, branding, web design & online communications and in-store & event presentations.