Maxime Simoens mightnot have gotten the top job at Dior, but a recent cash infusion from Dior and LVMH owner Bernard Arnault should be a comforting consolation prize.
Arnault is reported to have purchased a stake in Simoens's eponymous two-year-old fashion label. The size of Arnault's stake in the business is unknown, but his investment indicates that he wants to keep tabs on Simoens. At 27, Simeons is so well-regarded in the French design world that he was widely rumored to be in the running to replace John Galliano at Dior. Until recently, Simoens was also the creative director of French label Leonard, but he left that post earlier this month — which made many believe that he would in fact take over for Galliano. It was announced shortly afterward that the job went to Raf Simons.
But just because Simoens isn't at Dior now doesn't mean he won't be in the future. A source suggested to WWD that LVMH may be interested in parlaying Simeons's talent into a future role at one of its bigger fashion houses, which include Givenchy, Louis Vuitton, and Fendi, among others.
The last time Dior bought a stake in a smaller fashion company was 2009, when it acquired 49 percent of Edun, the eco-friendly line founded by U2 frontman Bono.
A look at highlights from Simoens's past collections in the gallery.
Photo: Maxime Simoens takes a bow at a presentation of his clothing in Singapore, October 2011.