Ferrari Plans to Cash in on Cachet
For over 50 years the name Ferrari has been synonymous with luxury and speed, creating both bold racing machines and sleek toys for the ultra rich. The familiar prancing horse logo is one of the world’s most recognized brands, one that epitomizes European style. While the Italian automaker has previously been reluctant to branch out and put the Ferrari name on lines of luxury products all that is changing as the company prepares for a public listing.
Now chairman Sergio Marchionne has plans to cash in on the cachet of the Ferrari name by putting the legendary brand on lines of luxury goods in a manner similar to that of Armani or Hermes.
Marchionne did not hide his ambitions in a statement announcing plans to spin off the Ferrari brand from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV. “I actually think cars are almost incidental to Ferrari. It sounds sacrilegious. But it is truly a luxury brand.”
That could mean the end of the current lines of products bearing the Ferrari name, some of which are not exactly in the luxury category, which is why one analyst is critical of the way the Ferrari logo has been used in the past. Brand finance executive Robert Haigh was openly dismissive of the way the iconic name has been used, saying “There are Ferrari caps, rubbish jackets and watches that are not necessarily expensive or well-made.” Haigh added, “They are not necessarily protecting the Scuderia brand the way they should be.”
With watches bearing the Scuderia Ferrari name selling for prices starting at $135 in department stores like Macy’s and , it’s not hard to see Haigh’s point. Shouldn’t a legendary name like Ferrari be attached to a high end luxury watch that is worthy of the prancing horse logo? A timepiece as sleek, racy and timeless as a Ferrari GTB or Berlinetta would truly be a credit to the legendary brand!