Ferrari's Lifestyle Gambit: Balancing Exclusivity and Accessibility

by: Julia Lee Cunningham

Publication Date: July 9, 2024
Length: 18 pages
Product ID#: 9-345-743

Core Disciplines: Leadership/Organizational Behavior, Marketing/Sales, Strategy & Management

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Teaching Note

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Benedetto Vigna, Ferrari’s CEO, was thinking about the company’s February 2022 debut of its ready-to-wear collection at Milan Fashion Week. Since being named CEO for the iconic Italian automaker in 2021, he recognized that Ferrari’s long-term growth and relevance hinged on the company’s ability to evolve into a luxury lifestyle brand.

Steeped in auto racing heritage and renowned for its high-performance luxury cars, Ferrari first began experimenting with brand extensions into lifestyle realms like apparel, accessories, collectibles, and hospitality experiences in the late 1990s. However, these brand enhancements were limited in scope and often executed through licensing arrangements that provided little brand control. Now, with younger demographics prioritizing immersive experiences over outright product ownership, Vigna has made translating Ferrari’s brand essence into elevated lifestyle offerings a strategic priority. Core to this mission is bringing the design, production, and retailing of lifestyle products in-house to ensure tight quality control and brand coherence.

This case examines how Ferrari aims to drive business growth via reimagining and prioritizing its lifestyle segment. From the viewpoint of the company’s new CEO the case looks at an ambitious mission to extend the brand’s reach beyond iconic cars into experiential luxury, using (and going beyond) high-style apparel, fashion accessories, and collectibles.

Teaching Objectives

After reading and discussing the material, students should:

  • Analyze the strategic rationale behind lifestyle extension through diversified product offerings and experiential initiatives.
  • Examine the organizational implications of a major strategic shift, such as Ferrari’s move into the lifestyle segment, including cultural challenges and the importance of cross-functional collaboration.
  • Understand the role of customer segmentation and the marketing mix in creating targeted offerings and experiences for different customer segments.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of Ferrari’s customer segmentation strategy and identify potential challenges and considerations in serving multiple segments.
  • Discuss the importance of metrics beyond financial performance in measuring the success of a lifestyle brand extension strategy, such as brand perception, customer loyalty, and brand equity.
  • Formulate recommendations for the Ferrari Lifestyle Division to refine its strategy further, enhance customer engagement, and solidify its position in the luxury market.