The maker of Louis Vuitton handbags and Veuve Clicquot Champagne is taking aim at a form of luxury consumption that’s spreading worldwide: day drinking in the summer months with a bottle of rosé.
LVMH announced it would buy Chateau du Galoupet, a 17th-century estate in the Provence region on France’s Mediterranean coast that will be the group’s first producer of rosé wine. “A micro-climate which refreshes the vines with temperate and salty winds” ensures consistent yields and was a selling point for the estate, the French luxury group said.
LVMH’s wine and spirits portfolio includes Champagnes such as Dom Perignon and Ruinart, as well as Hennessy Cognac. Other acquisitions have included top-shelf makers of Bordeaux and Burgundy like the Clos des Lambrays estate whose grand cru bottles can retail north of $US260 ($A375).
Now rising demand for rosé - which has lately become emblematic of South-of-France savoir vivre and a staple for daytime summer parties - has seen the French luxury conglomerate buy an estate whose bottles still retail for less than $US15 ($A21.50).
Exports of Provencal rosé have risen 14-fold over the past 10 years, local trade association CIVP said. Exports rose 8 per cent in value last year, roughly three times the increase for French wines overall.
The acquisition is LVMH’s latest manoeuvre as the group, controlled by France’s wealthiest man, Bernard Arnault, tries to keep up with the fast-changing tastes of young luxury consumers. Earlier this month the company confirmed it was launching a new fashion brand fronted by the American pop singer Rihanna.
Other recent acquisitions include the high-end travel group Belmond, which operates the Hotel Caruso on the Amalfi Coast and Orient Express trains from London to Venice.
LVMH declined to say how much it paid for Chateau du Galoupet, which comprises 68 hectares of vines about 50 kilometres west of St Tropez.