Social & Environmental responsibility

Green Lights

Thanks to advances in lighting technology, light can now be produced using much less energy. LED lights – for Light-Emitting Diode – reduce energy consumption by 40% on average versus conventional lighting.

This is extremely important for LVMH, since 80% of the Group’s greenhouse gas emissions are directly attributable to energy consumption at its 4,700 stores, which span nearly 1.5 million square meters of floorspace – the equivalent of 200 football fields! And because half of a store’s energy consumption comes from lighting (the other 50% is mainly from air-conditioning and heating), resorting to less energy-hungry technologies is essential for LVMH, which aims to reduce CO2 emissions from energy consumption by 25% between now and 2020.

To help its Maisons shine brightly while consuming less energy by taking full advantage of new LED solutions, the Group created the LVMH Lighting program in 2013. LVMH Lighting supports architectural teams at the Maisons in installing LED lighting to enhance retail spaces and products. LVMH products are created with meticulous attention to detail, continuous innovation and a quest for excellence, and these same imperatives shape the lighting at its stores.

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© SWPhotography

Lighting up the customer experience

LVMH knows how essential lighting is in creating an amazing experience for customers in its stores. LED lights are a reliable, environmentally-friendly, sustainable and cost-effective solution. They also offer architects considerable creative scope to take lighting design to new heights of sophistication, subtly showcasing products while providing elegant visual comfort. This often entails hidden light sources that allow the products to instantly capture a customer’s gaze by studiously avoiding glare or harsh transitions between two lighting ambiances with sharply different contrasts.

« LVMH knows how essential lighting is in creating an amazing experience for customers in its stores. »

© DR Celine

LVMH holds second LIFE in STORES Awards: LVMH encourages environmental excellence at its Maisons, rewarding the most outstanding achievements from among its Group stores

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Luminous innovations

Working with the Group’s architects and lighting designers, LVMH Lighting contributes expertise to let them give free rein to their creativity and aesthetic approach. Special relationships with a network of suppliers enable LVMH Lighting to offer customized solutions – 80% of the spotlights ordered are not standard catalogue products – as well as new products on the cusp of innovation.

Equally important, LVMH Lighting leverages environmental performance as a driver for innovation. To meet the massive challenge of replacing conventional lighting with LEDs in all Group stores, LVMH Lighting teamed with renowned lighting designer Hervé Descottes. To make this transition from conventional lighting to LEDs – known as “retrofitting” – as seamless as possible, the diameter of the LEDs had to match the standard at the time, which was 50 mm MR16 metal halide lamps. The problem was that this product was not available on the market. LVMH thus contracted with the Japanese firm Citizen Electronics, which spent two years on R&D to design an entirely new light. Branded “Light Engine”, this LED lamp has been available since 2017. It produces the same light as a 40W metal halide lamp, but consumes just 12 watts. Another significant advantage is the lamp’s extended five-year lifetime.

© DR T Fondaco Dei Tedeschi

100% LED by 2020

LED lighting makes a major contribution to LVMH’s efforts to reduce energy consumption, and the LED installation campaign has already generated very tangible results. The Group initially targeted a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions generated by its stores by 2020, with 15% coming from LED lighting and 10% from the use of green electricity. At the end of 2017, LED deployment had already enabled LVMH to achieve energy savings of 19%. But rather than simply settle for this advance, the Group decided to set an even more ambitious target and is now aiming for a 30% energy reduction from LEDs by 2020.
LVMH Lighting is spearheading the Group’s plans to transition 100% of its stores to LED technology by 2020. This is an admittedly ambitious challenge insofar as only a third of the stores were equipped with LEDs at the end of 2017. Yet while it may be more complex and often costly to retrofit a store rather than wait for a new construction or renovation project, the effort clearly pays off.  Some Maisons, including Sephora, Bvlgari and Le Bon Marché, have already completed assertive retrofitting programs. What’s more, in order to support such projects, LVMH has doubled the amount of its carbon fund compared with 2017 to 12 million euros.

© Pixelis

LVMH Lighting is spearheading the Group’s plans to transition 100% of its stores to LED technology by 2020.

Celebrating sober elegance

The LVMH Life in Store Awards, which recognize exemplary environmental initiatives by LVMH Group stores, include two prizes specifically for lighting: the Lighting Design award – which went to DFS in 2018 for its T Fondaco dei Tedeschi store in Venice – and a special Lighting progress award, awarded in 2018 to Sephora Europe for its retrofitting efforts. In the first edition of the Life in Store Awards in 2016, Sephora took home the Lighting Design award for its Huntington Beach store in California, while DFS won the special Lighting prize for the T Galleria Beauty by DFS, Causeway Bay in Hong Kong, which set a record for the lowest lighting power per square meter.

DFS and Sephora are concrete proof that lighting projects can be at the same time elegant and energy efficient. LVMH Lighting and its network of lighting designers liaise with architects at the Maisons on all lighting-related initiatives, defining every aspect of lighting – whether natural or artificial – in minute detail. They focus on key aspects such as color rendering and contrasts, which are important to attract the eye, rather than simply uniformly focusing the power of lighting. They also carefully select the best products for each environment and determine how the lights are configured in each space.

© DR Louis Vuitton

In 2018 LVMH set up a training program designed specifically for architects and store planners to help them maximize the environmental performance of stores, including a module dedicated to lighting. Entitled Life Influencers Agency, the training has been developed in conjunction neuroscience experts and consists of short 10-minute online sessions over a six-month period, coupled with five one-day workshops.

While LED technology currently delivers impressive performance, it is still very much in its infancy. The light output of LEDs is increasing at a rate comparable to that of computers, whose processing power doubles roughly every 18 to 24 months. The potential for further progress is huge: LEDs currently on the market have a luminous efficacy of 100 lumens per watt, and research labs have already designed lights with three times that efficacy!

© DR Sephora
© DR Guerlain

Future facing

What’s more, LED is a disruptive digital technology for which many applications have yet to even be invented. Used today as a replacement for conventional lighting, LEDs will in coming years fuel creativity for in-store designs, in particular by embedding intelligence.

LVMH Lighting is also pursuing its efforts to better understand how lighting affects the quality of the customer experience. Scientific studies may be conducted to assess the impact of lighting in stores. And because different regions of the world have their own specific “light culture”, LVMH Lighting has begun examining ways to match store lighting to the local culture while remaining faithful to the distinctive light signature of each Maison…and of course respecting the environment!