Kering is an international group based in Paris specialized in luxury goods.

By Frosina Dimova


The timber-trading company Pinault S.A. was founded in 1963 by François Pinault. After the company was quoted on Euronext Paris in 1988, it became the retail conglomerate Pinault-Printemps-Redoute (PPR) in 1994, and the luxury group Kering in 2013. The group is a constituent of the CAC 40 since 1995. François-Henri Pinault is President and CEO of Kering since 2005. In 2019, the group's revenue reached €15.9 billion.

In 1963, with a loan from his family and a bank, François Pinault opened the Établissements Pinault in Brittany (France) specialized in timber trading. The company became Pinault S.A. and grew organically and through successful acquisitions. In 1988, Pinault S.A. was listed on the Paris Stock Exchange.

In 1989, Pinault S.A. purchased 20% of CFAO, a French distribution conglomerate active throughout Africa. In 1990, Pinault S.A. and CFAO merged, and François Pinault became head of the newly formed group. This accelerated its acquisitions in the retail sector: Conforama (French furniture retailer) in 1991, Printemps (department stores in Paris) in 1992, which also owned 54% of La Redoute (French mail-order shopping retailer), and Fnac (French bookstore, multimedia and electronics retailer) in 1994. To align with its new activities, the group was renamed Pinault-Printemps-Redoute in 1994.

In 1999, Pinault-Printemps-Redoute purchased a controlling 42% stake of the Gucci group for $3 billion and 100% of Yves Saint Laurent. Those acquisitions marked the cornerstone of the group's shift towards luxury. After Gucci, Pinault-Printemps-Redoute acquired Boucheron (2000), Bottega Veneta (2001), Balenciaga (2001), and signed strategic partnerships with Alexander McQueen and Stella McCartney. In 2004, Pinault-Printemps-Redoute reached a 99.4% ownership of Gucci.

Since Kering became a luxury pure player, the group focused its development on sustainable development for the luxury fashion industry. In April 2012, Kering committed to a 4-year plan to significantly reduce its impact on the environment. The group developed the "Environmental Profit & Loss account" (EP&L) accounting method to track its progress. In 2017, the group presented its new sustainability program which targeted a 40% reduction of its global environmental impact by 2025, a strategy aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. In September 2019, Kering committed to become carbon-neutral within its operations and its supply chain.

In 2013, after opening the Material Innovation Lab, a center in Novara, Italy, specialized in innovative materials and fabric sustainability, Kering became part of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices and was named top sustainable textile, apparel and luxury goods corporation" in the Corporate Knights’ Global 100 index in 2018.

The Kering Foundation was created in 2008 to support women's rights initiatives worldwide. The Foundation works with local partners focused on women issues and gender equity. Alongside Gucci, Kering is a strategic partner of Chime for Change, an international campaign focused on women's education, health and justice, launched by Salma Hayek-Pinault, Frida Giannini (former CEO of Gucci), and Beyoncé. From 2012 to 2018, the Kering Foundation contributed to the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women with the White Ribbon campaign. In 2015, Kering became an official partner of the Festival de Cannes and launched the program Women in Motion to raise women issues in the film industry (extended to the Rencontres d'Arles photography festival in March 2019).

In October 2018, Kering started to implement the use of the first 100% traceable organic cotton. In December 2018, with Plug and Play, Kering launched the Kering Sustainable Innovation Award to reward and invest in startups focused on sustainability and luxury. In May 2019, the group aligned with the strict European Union standards for animal welfare and banned models under 18 from its shows and photo shootings. The French President Emmanuel Macron mandated François-Henri Pinault to promote an industry coalition for sustainability. In August 2019, Kering presented the Fashion Pact during the 45th G7 summit, an initiative signed by 32 fashion firms committing to concrete measures to reduce their environmental impact.

Kering board.
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