When a great soul leaves this world, the entire planet is sad. Last saturday, Jean-Louis Dumas left us at the age of 72 years old. He was the charismatic CEO of Hermès since the 70’s and he represented the renewal of the brand. He passed away last saturday from a Parkinsson desease that he has been fighting for a while. Thanks to him, the famous french luxury house bacame on the last decade the most beautiful brand around. Everything that comes from Hermès Ateliers are simply pure poetry. The story of the brand is a magnificient family success novel.
Thierry Hermès first established Hermès as a harness workshop, on the Grands Boulevards quarter of Paris, and dedicated to purveying to European noblemen. His goal was to create the finest wrought harnesses and bridles for the carriage trade. What a goal. The company earned acclaim in 1855, winning first prize in its class at the 1855 Paris Exposition.
Monsieur Hermès won the First Class Medal of the 1867 Exposition Universelle as well. Hermès son, Charles-Emile Hermes took management from his father, and moved the shop in 1880 to a location near the Palais de l’Elysée at 24 Rue Faubourg Saint-Honoré. It is at this location where the new leader introduced saddlery and began retail sales. With the aid of his sons (Adolphe and Émile-Maurice Hermès), the company catered to the elite of Europe, North Africa, Russia, Asia, and the Americas. In 1900, the company offered the haut à courroies bag specially designed so that riders could carry their saddles with them.
Some decenies later, the House of Hermès never were better. It is the golden goose of Luxury.
I see a beautiful parallel between the lost of Mr. Dumas and the poetry of Voyage d’Hermès, the latest perfume. On the advertising, we can see a beautiful wild horse travelling on the water and a white bird following them. This could be a last tribute to the faboulous visionary person Mr. Dumas was. The world lost a great soul.