North Tel Aviv is about to get even posher. Louis Vuitton, one of the world’s most recognizable luxury brands, is opening its Israeli flagship store on Thursday at the Ramat Aviv Mall and with it comes an invasion of its iconic logo, the interlocking initials LV.
The new 300 square meter store, designed by architect Panagiotis Chatzinas, a frequent Louis Vuitton collaborator, features separate sections for women’s bags, shoes, menswear and other collections. The merchandise will mix iconic items with fresh, seasonal interpretations and the latest accessories.
The interior furnishings will mirror other Louis Vuitton flagships around the world, save for Israeli artwork on the walls to give it a local touch. Naturally, there will be a VIP section dedicated to rare and unusual leather goods, tucked safely behind closed doors and with an expert shop assistant at your service.
Prices will range from NIS 2,500 to NIS 15,800 for bags; NIS 10,300 to NIS 22,000 for luggage, and NIS 2,090 to NIS 3,150 for shoes.
Louis Vuitton founded his eponymous fashion house in Paris in 1854; his signature handbags and luggage have since become synonymous with old-world wealth. When designer Marc Jacobs was named LV’s artistic director in 1997, the label rapidly expanded its international operations, moving into ready-to-wear fashion lines, shoes, accessories, watches, glasses and jewelry, all sold through a network of 463 stores spread around the globe.
The brand, named the world’s most valuable for an eighth year in a row, is now part of the world’s largest luxury brand empire, Paris-based LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton. Under that golden umbrella is a number of other well-known fashion labels, such as Christian Dior, Givenchy, Fendi and Celine. The conglomerate, estimated to be worth $22.7 billion in 2013 (according to Millward Brown Optimor’s 2012 BrandZ study, down 12 percent from 2012), is run by Bernard Arnault, the wealthiest person in France.
Louis Vuitton has run a small boutique shop in Kikar Hamedina in Tel Aviv for the past 12 years. The store, which sold mostly bags, recently closed.
Four years ago, Louis Vuitton added Tel Aviv to the prestigious City Guides series it publishes every year. In the guide, Tel Aviv is described as an open and stylish city, the center of gay culture and the Israeli left, still waiting for peace to come with its neighbors.
Though the arrival of the flagship may not contribute to the latter issues, at the very least, Tel Aviv is about to become a bit more stylish.
by Elran Tsabag
The jam-packed schedule provided participants with a showcase of Israeli companies and panels on what seemed like a multitude of topics and issues within the Israeli tech scene. Within two days, participants were exposed to panels on clean energy, medical tech, cyber security, gaming, entertainment, market trends, investment funding, and mobile technology – not to mention the infinite small talk taking place on the side.
During breaks, side discussions and networking meetings brought the overall volume to a roar. You could feel the elevated energy in the crowd as soon as panels adjourned and gave participants the opportunity to discuss their respective companies, investments, tech trends, and build relationships that will undoubtedly impact the Israeli tech scene. It was the quintessential environment for business deals to take place, where investors and entrepreneurs came together in conversation to represent “amazing companies and incredible technology.”
Giddy participants reveled in prizes handed out at random between presentations and breaks. Some of the most impressive companies showcased there included Wibbitz and Oramed. Wibbitz (“Your News in Motion”) has developed the technology that converts online news articles into narrated videos. Oramed is a biomed company currently developing the technology for the oral delivery of drugs traditionally administered by injection; the company is currently in Phase 2 clinical trials of an insulin drug which can be taken orally.
The conference is co-chaired by Yossi Vardi (A.K.A., “Godfather of Israeli High Tech”) and Sharona Justman (Managing Director of STEP Strategy Advisors). Vardi came to fame as the pioneer of instant messaging platform ICQ (sold to AOL), and in consequently developing over 70 high-tech companies. Justman is a businesswoman who leads STEP Strategy Advisors, a strategic planning and acquisition advisory firm in the United States, Europe, and Israel. Together, the duo founded ‘The Israel Conference’ in Los Angeles to generate success in Israel-related companies and investors.
We can’t wait for next year’s conference, scheduled to take place on May 29-30, 2014.
A group of Palestinian and Israeli businessmen have defied the antagonism supposedly dividing their communities, and met on the shores of the Dead Sea to appeal to their governments to get out of the current political rut, and make real steps towards a two-state solution.
Nearly 200 top Israeli and Palestinian executives convened this week at the Breaking the Impasse Initiative (BTI) meeting at the World Economic Forum in Jordan.
Organizers said they would leverage their collective business experience and influence to convince leaders on both sides to begin serious negotiations.
Yossi Vardi, chairman of International Technologies Ventures, said: “Today we are announcing the existence of this group and we make a commitment and a pledge to continue to find a solution for the two people who are living between the Jordan and the Mediterranean.
“Enough is enough. Too much tears were shed by mothers. There is no family, Israeli family or Palestinian family, which didn’t suffer.”
The Israeli-Palestinian corporate declaration came in the wake of another round of visits by US Secretary of State John Kerry to the region to restart peace talks stalled since 2010. He left last week after meeting with the leadership of both sides, but no breakthroughs were announced.
Have you been fantasizing about a Fauchon éclair since your last trip to Paris? Well, you’ll soon be able to buy those fluffy cream puffs and little tartlets in Israel too.
Pierre Besnainou, a French Jewish millionaire who bought Israel’s Carmel Winery with his partners, and one of Fauchon’s shareholders, wants to bring the French gourmet brand to the Holy Land.
The huge store on Place de la Madeleine in Paris, which was founded about 120 years ago, has turned into a tourist attraction and operates a café as well.
Fauchon is known for its pastries, as well as imported fruit and a large variety of delicacies such as foie gras and truffles, which are purchased by loyal customers, including some of France’s presidents. The Persian shah was also said to have delicacies flown from the gourmet food store to his palace.
Besnainou owns other food businesses in France, and is also active in the fields of communications and real estate. In Israel he is one of the owners of the Chefa catering services company.
Yedioth Ahronoth has learned that Besnainou co-founded a company with the Lagaat Baochel (“Touch Food”) Group in a bid to open a Fauchon store in Tel Aviv. Lagaat Baochel operates stores offering raw materials cooking and baking supplies, as well as cooking classes with the stars of Channel 2′s “Master Chef” show.
The company is also co-partner (50%) in the Street Food Bazaar at Tel Aviv’s Sarona compound – a music and food market which will be opened this year in a building that used to be a winery – and is considering opening a Fauchon store in a different building in the compound.
Besnainou and the owners of Lagaat Baochel visited Paris several months ago and decided that a professional team from the gourmet shop would visit Israel.
Lagaat Baochel founder Zvika Karouby told Yedioth Ahronoth that the plan was to open one large branch in Israel which would include a café and a gourmet food store – either in Sarona or the Ramat Aviv Mall – as well as pastry and product stands in shopping malls.
Fauchon will import the delicacies to Israel, while the pastries and breads will be made on the site, with the knowledge and guidance of the French team.
Lagaat Baochel currently has restaurants in Melisron malls in Raanana, Petah Tikva, Haifa and Rishon Lezion. “We are in talks to find a place at the Ramat Aviv Mall,” Karouby says.
Aren’t you afraid of bringing a gourmet food store to Israel at a time of economic slowdown?
“We are not alone,” says Karouby. “We have a partner who is one of the Fauchon owners, who will make sure we get attractive prices. Fauchon has excellent quality, and the price differences will not be big.
“We are confident that we are making the right move. Fauchon is not very expensive. We just saw, during the visit to France, that a macaroon costs only €1.7 ($2.2) and an éclair €2.2 ($2.85). In Israel they will be sold at up to 15% more, but the quality will be excellent and identical to the original products.”
Israeli-Turkish business ties warming up: A first meeting since the start of the diplomatic crisis between the two countries was held recently between Zvi Oren, president of the Manufacturers Association of Israel, and Muharrem Yilmaz, president of the Turkish Industry and Business Association (TUSIAD).
The meeting was preceded by an official invitation extended by Yilmaz to Oren to visit Istanbul.
“It’s amazing to see how relieved they are that they can do business with us again,” Oren told Yedioth Ahronoth. “During the visit we discussed ways to strengthen business ties and Israeli tourism to Turkey.”
The two decided to set up a joint steering committee, whose members will meet regularly and create a future work plan for both countries on commerce and industry issues. At the first stage, the committee will focus on cooperation in the fields of agriculture, energy and communications. The officials also agreed on sending out mutual trade delegations.
Israel’s trade relations with Turkey are still among the major ties upheld by the Israeli economy. The trade volume between the two countries fell 13% in 2012 from 2011 due to the crisis between the countries. Israeli exports to Turkey went down by 23%, while imports from Turkey dropped 4%.
The volume of trade between the countries totaled some $3.5 billion in 2012, and the first few months of 2013 recorded a 13% increase in commerce compared to the same period last year.
Israeli exports to Turkey focus on chemical industry products, plastic and rubber, metals and electric equipment and machinery.
Registration starts at 7:30am along with a fulsome breakfast buffet and the action starts at 8:30am. Panels, Keynotes, Fast & Cool™, and our newest feature, FutureFest™ provide the foreground to two days of rich content and fascinating people.
Thursday evening is the Music & Media & Entertainment Reception featuring Israeli performers along with wine and cheese from Israel through 9:30pm. Friday afternoon concludes the Conference with Lunch and high-quality networking continuing to 3:30pm.
Throughout the day, CEOs of Israel-facing companies and VCs will speak about their successes, their breakthrough technology, their markets, their deals, and their exits.
Arrive early and stay late to enjoy the unparalleled networking that provides business opportunities with world-class firms to expand your reach and imagination.
Prizes are awarded from our phenomenal sponsors through random drawings throughout the days. You must be in the room to win. We thank our esteemed sponsors for their quality products.
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