French luxury-goods company Christian Dior Wednesday will unveil a line of mobile phones, extending beyond its traditional fashion business to boost sales.
The new Dior phone, priced from â‚¬3,500 ($5,000) and up, comes after competitors such as Prada SpA and Dolce & Gabbana have turned their fashion-branded mobile phones into significant businesses.
The phones will be made by a small French manufacturer, ModeLabs Group.
Dior Chief Executive Sidney Toledano says the idea of creating a Dior phone was driven by demand in new luxury markets such as China and Russia. “In the same way that we have developed our watch and jewelry lines, we want to increase sales with the phone,”.
He expects to sell at least 10,000 of them a year at the beginning and hopes to reach annual sales of â‚¬200 million in the longer term.
“What really convinced us was seeing the attention people in emerging markets pay to buying a phone, by selecting the color and design,”. In Europe and the U.S., in contrast, phones are seen as more disposable commodities, he said.
Dior’s new phone, which will work world-wide, except in Japan and Korea, where it isn’t compatible with local wireless networks, is priced higher than rival fashion phones, closer to the price range of Nokia Corp.’s premium line Vertu, which also starts in the $5,000 range.
Dolce & Gabbana, Prada and Giorgio Armani SpA all have phones out that cost around $600. Via the wall street journal.