Arnault fetes new laureates of LVMH’s Institut des Métiers d’Excellence
Bernard Arnault feted the latest crop of graduates of Institut des Métiers d’Excellence (IME), a somewhat unique program introduced by LVMH to promote and sustain artisanal skills, basking in the applause of an audience of nearly 500 cheerful young hopefuls.
“The Institut des Métiers d’Excellence for LVMH represents the channels through which we preserve the savoir-faire that we keep alive; and the employment for skilled artisans that we develop,” said LVMH Chairman Arnault in a speech inside the luxury conglomerate’s world headquarters on Avenue Montaigne, France’s toniest shopping street.
The heart of IME is vocational training to maintain time-honored skills, which – allied to creativity – are effectively the bedrock of LVMH’s many brands.
Begun in 2014, IME has rapidly expanded and now operates in tandem with 15 different design schools and two universities. Moreover, back in 2014 IME had an opening class of just 28 apprentices. This year it encompassed some 500 apprentices, 300 of them alumni.
The project offers 15 different courses, including classes in France, Italy and Switzerland; ranging from a masters in design in the Sorbonne to leather goods study in Polimoda in Italy and high-end watchmaking training in Switzerland.
The age group is wide-ranging – from 15 to 45 – and so are the number of companies involved. This year 32 LVMH group brands in five different sectors participated. And, in an era where education is vital, the IME helps provide a unique set of training skills that almost guarantees a career in the luxury industry. No wonder everyone seemed so bright-eyed, as they sipped Veuve Clicquot after Arnault had departed.
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