In a glittering flurry of bejewelled wings, feathered headdresses and glittering knickers, the Victoria’s Secret fashion show hit London last night, December 2nd. But do the $15 million efforts of putting on this lingerie-clad super-model fest translate into more customers?
For the first time, the Victoria’s Secret fashion show was held in London, at the Earls Court Exhibition Centre and starred 47 models, of which Jourdan Dunn and Karlie Kloss are to name but a few, and star-studded performances by Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and Ariana Grande.
Lingerie and intimate clothing company Victoria’s Secret, with its estimated value of £2.5 billion according to Brand Finance, is famed for its annual fashion show which features a bevvy of top models, or ‘Angels’, taking to the catwalk in elaborate costumed underwear.
The estimated budget for the show reaches $15 million, and this year, the 50-strong hair and make-up artist crew had all hands on deck (and racks) to prep the models and their 39 pairs of custom-made wings.
To continue the theme of ‘firsts’, the honour of modelling the notorious ‘Fantasy Bra’ was bestowed upon not one, but two Angels; Alessandra Ambrosio and Adriana Lima, who both sported bras worth $2 million each, encrusted with 16,000 handset precious stones and 18-carat gold. Designed by world-famous jeweller Mouawad, the pieces took over 1,380 hours to create.The hefty price tag is still a far cry from the $15 million bra modelled by the world’s highest paid supermodel, Gisele Bundchen, in 2000.
The expenses may not be cause for concern, however, for the company holds a share greater than 35% in the lingerie and intimates market worth $12 billion. L Brands, owner of Victoria’s Secret, has reportedly seen increased store sales for the last consecutive 14 quarters, and the show’s big money spend will more than likely be softened by the ticket prices paid by last night’s 3,000 guests.
Attendees, consisting of the upper echelons of glamorous society, arrived brandishing tickets reportedly costing upwards of £10,000. Pure Entertainment Group, event management and luxury concierge company, offered a limited selection of tickets last year for the 2013 show with a price tag of $14,000 per ticket. With an added commission price estimated at $1,000-2,500, the company stated, “It’s important to note that this is one of the most exclusive social events of the year as it attracts celebrities and VIP guests from all around the world.”
Following a record-setting Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales bonanza worldwide, this year’s Victoria’s Secret show may be hoping to boost its appeal among consumers looking to make purchases for the festive season. Previous VS fashion shows, which take an entire year to plan, seem to have delivered a spike in website visitors for the brand. Last year, unique visitors to victoriassecret.com almost doubled in a month from under 6.5 million to over 9.5 million hits between November-December 2013, according to analytics site Compete. The pattern of website view spikes in December are expected with the rise in people shopping for festive gifts, but the Victoria’s Secret fashion show event is sure to be a major factor in propelling the brand into the consumer’s conscious.
Since its inception 18 years ago, the Victoria’s Secret fashion show has become a spectacle of its own, drawing in 9.7 million viewers in the United States alone for its 2013 one-hour broadcast of an all-singing, all-pouting and all-strutting performance cast.