Super interesting lunch with the best and brightest from a large luxury group at the New York Time’s conference in Hong Kong. Here is how they view service providers:

Q: When is it the right time to take things in house?

A: When we are ready. For our marquis brand, we have a full commercial team. And we’re already doing customer service. But for less established brands, we still need 3rd parties to manage day-to-day. Our teams don’t have the resources…yet.

Q: Do any third party service providers have lasting value?

A: People who design an unforgettable moment for consumers. For example, Gucci owns their world and it is exceptional. Visit their newest stores and you will see it immediately.

For those who serve, nothing new. What’s intriguing is the perception of where VALUE sits. In the luxury world, stickiness comes from a studio…where top designers don’t have to discount and are in high demand.

Where impact can be easily measured (for exdample, line items on a P&L), ‘take backs’ may be inevitable. But it seems there is no limit on human imagination in the C-suite.

So if you design the future, you can trade up to where anything is possible…and that value is enduring.

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